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Photocopy discovered in place of Munakata piece

Jiji Press YOKOHAMA (Jiji Press) — The Kanagawa prefectural government said Monday a woodblock print made by Shiko Munakata has been missing for three years since the real work of the noted woodprint artist was found to have been replaced with a photocopy.

The print may have been stolen, the prefectural government said, adding it is consulting with police.

According to Kanagawa officials, the missing print measures about 65 centimeters in width and 50 centimeters in height. The prefectural government asked Munakata to produce the print to design a drop curtain at the Kanagawa Kenmin Hall, a performing arts center run by the Kanagawa Arts Foundation in Yokohama.

The print was acquired by the prefectural government for ¥3 million in 1974. There is no other copy.

In May 2014, an expert questioned the authenticity of the print, telling the museum that it seemed to be a replica. In response, staff checked the print and found out it was a photocopy.

The foundation officially informed the prefectural government of the missing of the print on Monday, saying its three-year search ended in failure.

Hayato Oba, the prefecture’s cultural affairs division chief, apologized for the incident.Speech

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