The possibility of an elaborate hoax, or fraud, has been examined by experts and dismissed, according to Libération, the French newspaper that revealed the find. The sheer variety of different Picasso styles, from different periods, would have been impossible to copy so convincingly, the experts believe.
The greatest discovery may be the nine paper collages in Picasso’s pre-1915 Cubist style. These alone have been valued at €60m. Although never seen before, they may be part of a series from 1912 previously believed to have been lost or destroyed by flooding. None of the 271 works, including more than 200 sketches and doodles in notebooks, are listed in the catalogue of Picasso’s work established after his death in 1973.