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A first look at stolen Renoir reveals, retains some secrets
A first look at stolen Renoir reveals, retains some secrets

The little Renoir landscape looks so modest and guileless and transparent that a casual observer never would guess at the secrets the painting hides. "Paysage Bords de Seine" depicts a river and bushes. On that summer day in 1879, a sailboat was skimming along the River Seine. There were trees and clouds. The light was abundant. Viewers even can see the unpainted canvas peeking out from the frame. That unconcealed quality is what struck senior painting conservator Mary Sebera when she examined the water view for the first time after it was returned to the Baltimore Museum of Art for good on Jan. 31 after a 62-year absence. "This painting is so open and direct,"...

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