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Art Worth Millions Found in Dumpster

Updated: May 7, 2022

On a job to clear out an old barn in Connecticut, Jared Whipple retrieved hundreds of abandoned, dirt-covered paintings from a dumpster. Whipple later found out they were by Francis Hines, an abstract expressionist who died in 2016 at the age of 96.

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 for wrapping installations around Europe, including the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.

Hines wrapped more than 10 buildings in New York including the Washington Square Arch, JFK Airport and the Port Authority Bus Terminal, art curator and historian Peter Falk told the Hearst Connecticut Media Group.

The hundreds of pieces of art retrieved by Whipple included paintings, sculptures and small drawings. Which, when you tally them all up, are worth millions of dollars.

Whipple showed some of the pieces at a gallery in Waterbury last year, and recently decided to sell some of the art. He is collaborating with Hollis Taggart, a New York City-based gallery, on exhibits in New York and Connecticut in shows beginning next month.

Since finding the treasure trove, Whipple has researched Hines’ work and contacted the artist’s family, who, he said, have allowed him to keep and sell the art.

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


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