This is a painting made by Bill Stoneham in 1972 called 'The Hands Resist Him'.
You may want to leave this blog post now before you stare at the painting too long, because it is said to be haunted. This is what the artist says about the inspiration for his work, "When I painted the Hands Resist Him in 1972, I used an old photo of myself at age five in a Chicago apartment. The hands are the 'other lives.' The glass door, that thin veil between waking and dreaming. The girl/doll is the imagined companion, or guide through this realm." According to Stoneham, the painting was displayed at a Gallery where it was eventually sold. Creepy fact number one: within a year of the painting being sold, both the Gallery owner and the art critic who reviewed it for the LA Times were dead.
The painting was sold to actor John Marley, a name I did not recognize right away, but once I saw his picture a big light bulb went on over my head. He is one of Cassavettes regulars and has been a great character actor in many familiar films like THE GODFATHER!
Marley died in 1984 and sometime after that a "picker" found the painting behind an abandoned brewery. He sold it to a couple that thought it to be a wonderful work of art and could not understand why it would be abandoned in the way it was. Once they hung it on their wall it didn't take long for them to find out why it was. In February of 2000 they listed it for sale on Ebay as a "Haunted Painting". Here is how they listed it, and it became an overnight sensation.
THE ORIGINAL EBAY TEXT THAT ACCOMPANIED THE PAINTINGWHEN WE RECEIVED THIS PAINTING, WE THOUGHT IT WAS REALLY GOOD ART. A " PICKER " HAD FOUND IT ABANDONED BEHIND AN OLD BREWERY. AT THE TIME WE WONDERED A LITTLE WHY A SEEMINGLY PERFECTLY FINE PAINTING WOULD BE DISCARDED LIKE THAT. ( TODAY WE DON'T !!! ) ONE MORNING OUR 4 AND 1/2 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER CLAIMED, THAT THE CHILDREN IN THE PICTURE WERE FIGHTING, AND COMING INTO THE ROOM DURING THE NIGHT. NOW, I DON'T BELIEVE IN UFOS OR ELVIS BEING ALIVE, BUT MY HUSBAND WAS ALARMED. TO MY AMUSEMENT HE SET UP A MOTION TRIGGERED CAMERA FOR THE NIGHTS. AFTER THREE NIGHTS THERE WERE PICTURES.THE LAST TWO PICTURES SHOWN ARE FROM THAT 'STAKEOUT'. AFTER SEEING THE BOY SEEMINGLY EXITING THE PAINTING UNDER THREAT, WE DECIDED, THE PAINTING HAS TO GO.PLEASE JUDGE FOR YOURSELF. --- BEFORE YOU DO, PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING WARNING AND DISCLAIMER. ----WARNING: DO NOT BID ON THIS PAINTING IF YOU ARE SUSCEPTIBLE TO STRESS RELATED DISEASE, FAINT OF HEART OR ARE UNFAMILIAR WITH SUPERNATURAL EVENTS. BY BIDDING ON THIS PAINTING, YOU AGREE TO RELEASE THE OWNERS OF ALL LIABILITY IN RELATION TO THE SALE OR ANY EVENTS HAPPENING AFTER THE SALE, THAT MIGHT BE CONTRIBUTED TO THIS PAINTING. THIS PAINTING MAY OR MAY NOT POSESS SUPERNATURAL POWERS, THAT COULD IMPACT OR CHANGE YOUR LIFE. HOWEVER, BY BIDDING YOU AGREE TO EXCLUSIVELY BID ON THE VALUE OF THE ARTWORK, WITH DISREGARD TO THE LAST TWO PHOTOS FEATURED IN THIS AUCTION, AND HOLD THE OWNERS HARMLESS IN REGARD TO THEM AND THEIR IMPACT, EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED.------------ NOW THAT WE GOT THIS OUT OF THE WAY, ONE QUESTION TO YOU EBAYERS. WE WANT OUR HOUSE TO BE BLESSED AFTER THE PAINTING IS GONE, DOES ANYBODY KNOW, WHO IS QUALIFIED TO DO THAT? THE SIZE OF THE PAINTING IS 24 BY 36 INCHES, SO IT IS RATHER LARGE. AS I HAVE HAD SEVERAL QUESTIONS, HERE THE FOLLOWING ANSWERS. THERE WAS NO ODOR LEFT BEHIND IN THE ROOM. THERE WERE NO VOICES, OR THE SMELL OF GUNPOWDER, NO FOODPRINTS OR STRANGE FLUIDS ON THE WALL. TO DETER QUESTIONS IN THIS DIRECTION, THERE ARE NO GHOSTS IN THIS WORLD , NO SUPERNATURAL POWERS, THIS IS JUST A PAINTING, AND MOST THESE THINGS HAVE AN EXPLANATION, IN THIS CASE PROBABLY A FLUKE LIGHT EFFECT. I ENCOURAGE YOU TO BID ON THE ARTWORK, AND CONSIDER THE LAST TWO PHOTOGRAPHS AS PURE ENTERTAINMENT, AND PLEASE DO NOT TAKE THEM INTO CONSIDERATION, WHEN BIDDING. AS WE THINK IT IS A GOOD IDEA TO BLESS ANY HOUSE, WE STILL WELCOME INPUT INTO THAT PROCEDURE. This auction is nearing the end. I want to thank the more than 13000 people that took the time to look at this image on Ebay. I appreciate the more than 30 suggestions, that I received regarding blessing the house, exorcising and cleansing. 7 e-mails reported strange or irregular events taking place, when viewing this image. And I will relay two suggestions made by the senders. First not to use this image as the background on the screen, and second not to display this image around juveniles or children. Last not least, thanks for appreciating the art as well.
This is one of the photos they used on the Ebay listing said to show the doll holding a gun to the boy and "forcing" him out of the photo. A number of people who looked at the listing reported having strange feelings and hallucinations, which added to the paintings urban legend.
The painting was sold to Perception Gallery in Michigan for just over $1,000. The owner contacted Bill Stoneham and surprised him with the ghost story surrounding his work. Several follow up pieces have been commissioned after this strange story had come to pass, one in 2004 called 'Resistance At The Threshold' and in 2012 'Threshold Of Revelation'. Prints can be bought at Stoneham's website.
Hopefully having the art work on our website won't lead to any kind of ghostly nonsense, but please let us know if you have any weird experiences while viewing it! Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org