More about The Card Players

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Sr. Editor

The Card Players couldn't have bet on being stolen.

Part of a series of five paintings that depict anywhere from two to five people. The smallest of the paintings at only 47.5 x 57 cm.

This painting was stolen in a very high-profile theft while it was part of a traveling exhibit in Cézanne's hometown of Aix-en-Provence in August 1961.

The French Postal Service released a postage stamp of the painting acknowledging the loss. Reports vary regarding the recovery: Some sources say the paintings were returned a few months later after a ransom was paid, while others say almost a year passed before police found the paintings in a parked car in Marseille.

Other works stolen in the heist were Cezanne's paintings of a leg of mutton, a teapot, a landscape of Aix, Water Reflections or Reflection in the Water, Seated Peasant, and The Skulls. 

In 2011, this painting's twin in the series was sold for $250 - $300 million to the Royal Family of Qatar's private collection, making it the most expensive painting ever sold.