Trash turns out to be a treasure trove

Jason Weiland
Trash to treasurePhoto by Steve Johnson

What happens when you dig through the trash and the trash turns out to be worth millions of dollars? Can a find like that turn a person into a collector overnight?

Jared Whipple, an auto mechanic from Waterbury who maintains his own paint shop at home and is also the owner of JB's Automotive Repair in Southbridge, Mass., found a trove of paintings stored away inside an abandoned barn when he went to clear out some old materials for disposal last year.

The find turned out to be worth millions as it included pieces by Francis Hines - a one-time member of CFPAI (Connecticut Folk Art Institute) whose work can now be seen across museums nationwide.

Hines was renowned for his “wrapping” pieces, in which fabric is wrapped around an object. His art has been compared to that of Christo and Jeanne-Claude who became famous when they used this technique on buildings across Europe including Paris' Arc de Triomphe.

After finding a treasure trove of art hidden for generations, local artist and collector Peter Whipple has been able to collaborate with New York City-based gallery Hollis Taggart. The two will be hosting shows in Connecticut beginning next month that feature some pieces from Hines' paintings as well as drawings made by him during his lifetime!

He has also been in contact with the Hines family to consult with them.

According to AP News, Whipple told news outlets “I pulled it out of this dumpster and I fell in love with it, I made a connection with it. My purpose is to get Hines into the history books.”

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Writer and advocate interested in mental health, health, family, culture, creativity, and success.

Los Angeles, CA

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