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Maybe Michelangelo: Is living room painting a masterpiece?

Associated Press logo Associated Press 7/20/2017 By CAROLYN THOMPSON, Associated Press
In this June 26, 2017 photo, Martin Kober displays literature and copies of a family heirloom that he believes was painted by Renaissance master Michelangelo, at his home in Tonawanda, N.Y. Kober is convinced the painting of a dying Jesus that hung above the mantel in his upstate New York childhood home is the work of Michelangelo. Getting experts to agree remains the $300 million hurdle. (AP Photo/Carolyn Thompson) © The Associated Press In this June 26, 2017 photo, Martin Kober displays literature and copies of a family heirloom that he believes was painted by Renaissance master Michelangelo, at his home in Tonawanda, N.Y. Kober is convinced the painting of a dying Jesus that hung above the mantel in his upstate New York childhood home is the work of Michelangelo. Getting experts to agree remains the $300 million hurdle. (AP Photo/Carolyn Thompson)

TONAWANDA, N.Y. (AP) — Is a painting that once hung in an upstate New York living room a Michelangelo?

In this June 26, 2017 photo, research materials and books about Renaissance master Michelangelo are pictured at the home of Martin Kober in Tonawanda, N.Y. In the foreground is the 2014 book, "The Ragusa Pieta: History and Restoration," which documents the cleaning and diagnostic analysis of a wood-panel depiction of a dying Jesus that Kober said hung on a wall in his childhood home. Kober has been trying for 15 years, with little success, to get the art world to accept the painting as an authentic Michelangelo. (AP Photo/Carolyn Thompson) © The Associated Press In this June 26, 2017 photo, research materials and books about Renaissance master Michelangelo are pictured at the home of Martin Kober in Tonawanda, N.Y. In the foreground is the 2014 book, "The Ragusa Pieta: History and Restoration," which documents the cleaning and diagnostic analysis of a wood-panel depiction of a dying Jesus that Kober said hung on a wall in his childhood home. Kober has been trying for 15 years, with little success, to get the art world to accept the painting as an authentic Michelangelo. (AP Photo/Carolyn Thompson)

That's what its owner has been trying to prove for the last 15 years, but has so far gotten only a mixed bag of scholarly opinion.

Martin Kober says the painting of a dying Jesus that he grew up with in suburban Rochester could be worth $300 million if it truly is a Michelangelo.

Doubters say it is simply not good enough, or is another artist's painted version of a much-copied Michelangelo drawing. Supporters cite written historical references and forensic evidence that includes Michelangelo's preferred paint.

Kober has become frustrated over his long verification quest and says he is now willing to turn that job over to an artistic organization with more expertise and clout.

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