Four years ago, on her way to get a cup of coffee, New York resident Elizabeth Gibson spotted an interesting looking painting in the garbage pile. It looked too nice to be thrown away, so she took it home and hung it up on the wall.
Recently, while conducting some research, she realized that the painting was a masterpiece, painted by a famous Mexican artist called Rufino Tamayo. Dubbed Tres Personajes or Three people, it was painted in 1970. It had however been stolen from the owner and would have been destroyed with the trash, had Elizabeth not saved it.
Elizabeth returned the painting to its original owner, who decided to put it up for sale at Sotheby's (an auction company). An American collector purchased the painting on Tuesday, November 20th, for over one million US dollars. Elizabeth received $15,000 as a reward for returning the painting and will also receive a percentage (portion) of the sale price of the painting, as well as, a finder's fee from Sotheby's. So next time you are walking around, keep your eyes open - you never know what you may find!
Sources: NYT.com, BBC.Co.uk