Apparently, according to the collector, whose name has not been disclosed, the portrait of the woman which formed the top half of the complete painting lay unrecognised for many years in an antique shop.
In 2010, the portrait was discovered and since then has been subjected to a series of tests to authenticate it.
Jean-Jacques Fernier, a top expert in Courbet’s work, has confirmed that the portrait belongs to the famous painter.
This, the unknown collector claims, is the head of the Origin. It's something to think about: There just might be a mind at the beginning of the world.
The Origin of the World is after the jump for all you NSFW pussies...