A long-forgotten portrait has been discovered by Tenby artist August John after a New-York resident began researching his family’s artwork when it came into his possession.

Patrick Quéré has already successfully identified works by prominent artists including de Staël, Ed Clark and Mikhail Lariono.  Now, following a series of consultations with experts, Patrick is confident that the portrait of eight-year-old Robin is the work of the child's father, Augustus.

Western Telegraph: Robin JohnRobin John (Image: Patrick Quéré)

“I've done my best scouring archives, pestering experts and assembling all the necessary empirical evidence, and it slam-dunk proves its authenticity beyond any shadow of doubt,” Patrick Quéré told the Western Telegraph.

The oil and pencil portrait measures 11.5 in. x 9.25 in. without its frame, and is signed ‘John’ in the lower right hand.

Western Telegraph: August John's signatureAugust John's signature (Image: Patrick Quéré)

Its condition is described as ‘generally good’ with no retouching but some mounting cracks to the back from the nails. There are also remnants of paper backing and adhesive, although experts have confirmed that this doesn't affect the integrity of the painting.

The portrait has been valued at between £100,000 and £500,000.

Patrick’s family held strong associations with the Parisian art scene from the 1890s until the mid 1950 as they ran several bistros in Montmartre and Montparnasse.

Western Telegraph: Patrick QuéréPatrick Quéré (Image: Patrick Quéré)

“One was named Le Dauphin, another Neptune, and all were nautical themed as we're Breton, and of course John being Welsh there is our Celtic affinity," explained Patrick.

“Augustus painted this portrait of Robin in 1909 at his Chelsea atelier, but evidently he was my family's neighbour in Paris at the turn of the century and again following the outbreak of the First World War.

“So it’s likely that the portrait was given to my great-grandparents, Félix and Marie.”

Robin was the third son of Augustus and his wife Ida, with John often using his family as models particularly for his less conventional work.

It’s understood that Augusts and Robin had a difficult relationship, as Robin’s silences often infuriated John, who once declared that his son ‘hardly utters a word and radiates hostility’.

Born in Tenby in January 1878, Augustus was the son of a Haverfordwest solicitor who retained a strong connection with Pembrokeshire throughout his life . Even after achieving international fame he would often return to the county of his birth.

Whilst married to Ida and, later, to Dorelia, Augustus John was renowned for keeping mistresses. He is also accused of raping women, including Dylan Thomas’ wife Caitlin, as he believed that sex with the women he painted was an artist’s privilege.

The allegations surrounding Augustus John’s immorality and sexual behaviour have tarred Patrick's discovery of the portrait.

““I have to confess that I’m not proud of the portrait’s discovery after reading the disgusting and degenerate account of this demented sexual predator,” he said.

“In fact, I'm thoroughly sickened by it. Heaven knows how many other women and children this monster has destroyed.

“I've received valuations from auction houses of between £100,000 and £500,000 however my goal is to donate the work to a museum or a curated government or scholastic collection which doesn't charge admission so everyone can enjoy the work independent of social status.”

Patrick went on to say that the painting will subsequently carry the stipulation that upon accession, it must be displayed for 50 years before any period of storage and cannot be deaccessioned, but only transferred to a similar institution of the quality.

“I also believe that any resale rights his heirs receive should immediately be placed in a trust for the victims of rape and paedophilia,” he said.

“ It is the only moral and just punishment for a criminal who continues to enjoy impunity, and it shall provide a degree of closure for the sake of the memory of his victims.”

If anyone has any suggestions of a suitable museum or gallery which should display this important Augustus John work, send your comments below and they will forwarded to Patrick Quéré.