Moment car boot sculpture bought for just £90 is revealed to have been created by one of the 20th Century's greatest artists and worth £60,000

  • Post category:news
  • Reading time:4 min(s) read

  • A woman was thrilled to discover she had a genuine Elisabeth Frink sculpture
  • It was confirmed by experts on BBC’s Fake or Fortune, who valued it at £60,000 

A woman was thrilled after discovering a sculpture she bought at a car boot sale for just £90, was created by one of the 20th Century’s greatest artists and worth a staggering £60,000.

On the latest episode of the BBC’s Fake or Fortune, which aired on Tuesday at 8pm, viewers saw a woman called Amanda Kirke present a 14.5 inch bronze statue that she bought from Ardleigh Car Boot Sale in Essex.

Due to an inscription, Amanda believed it could be a piece by renowned English sculptor, Dame Elisabeth Frink.

She knew it would be valuable if it was genuine, but had no idea of just how much it would be worth. 

Waiting to find out what the experts thought, she said ‘I’m still a bit apprehensive. Excited but yeah, I am not sure how it’s gonna go.’

On the latest episode of the BBC 's Fake or Fortune, which aired on Tuesday at 8pm, viewers saw a woman called Amanda Kirke present a 14.5 inch bronze statue that she bought from Ardleigh Car Boot Sale in Essex

On the latest episode of the BBC ‘s Fake or Fortune, which aired on Tuesday at 8pm, viewers saw a woman called Amanda Kirke present a 14.5 inch bronze statue that she bought from Ardleigh Car Boot Sale in Essex

Amanda gasped and cheered as everyone congratulated her - 'Wonderful,' she exclaimed before getting emotional

Amanda gasped and cheered as everyone congratulated her – ‘Wonderful,’ she exclaimed before getting emotional

One expert called Annette, confirmed to Amanda that after carefully analysing it, they can confirm 'it is an original Frink'

One expert called Annette, confirmed to Amanda that after carefully analysing it, they can confirm ‘it is an original Frink’

Host, Phillip Mould, explained that if the sculpture was a fake, it would have been worth a few hundred pounds, which would make Amanda a small profit as she bought it for £90.

He went on to say that if it did turn out to be the real thing, it would be worth a ‘small fortune’ of ‘possibly £60,000.’

Adding ‘This is quite an emotive looking object and if we can prove that it is unquestionably by her and part of that series. That’s what the committee is meeting to consider.’

The experts were trying to work out if the sculpture was part of Frink’s Small Warrior collection which were created in the 1950s – there are just 10 of them in existence.

After hours of deliberating, they came back with an answer.

They said the most important and significant part of the testing were the ‘scientific metallurgical reports that were done,’ which were ‘really extensive and very interesting’.

One expert called Annette, confirmed to Amanda that after carefully analysing it, they can confirm ‘it is an original Frink’.

Amanda gasped and cheered as everyone congratulated her – ‘Wonderful,’ she exclaimed before getting emotional.

Annette cheerfully added ‘Well done you for finding it.’ 

The Fake or Fortune episode is available on BBC iPlayer.

Who was Dame Elisabeth Frink?

Dame Elisabeth Jean Frink was a renowned English sculptor and printmaker, from Thurlow in Suffolk.

She is best known for her expressionistic animal figures and bronze sculptures, which mostly depicted horses, dogs, men and sometimes birds.

Her sculptures have a very distinct and recognisable jagged cut and worked surfaces. 

Frink studied at the Guildford School of Art in the 1940’s and the Chelsea School of art after that.

She is one of the most celebrated sculptors in recent history – pop star David Bowie owned one of her Small Warrior figures.

Producing more than 400 sculptures during her career, she was the first woman to be elected as a Royal Academician in 1973. 

After a highly successful career, Dame Elisabeth Frink sadly died of cancer in April 1993, aged 62.

Following the dying wishes of her son, Lin Jammet in 2018, the Frink Estate and archive was given to the nation. 




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