7 Scary Haunted Paintings (True Paranormal Investigation Stories)

7 Scary Haunted Paintings (True Paranormal Investigation Stories)


7. “The Portrait of Bernardo de Galvez”:
hangs in the Galvez Hotel in Galveston [“Gal-vez-ston”],
Texas. Both the hotel and the entire city are named
after this important Spanish general, who helped America gain its independence by fighting
alongside American troops against the British. His military campaign took him from the state
of Mississippi [“Misses-sip-pee”] all the way to Florida, and he even took out a
British naval base in the Bahamas [“Ba-hahm-mas”]. As you can imagine, this famous commander
was given a lot of respect all throughout his life, and now he continues to demand it
even in death. It seems as if the great general is constantly
sizing people up to see if they would make for a good soldier to serve in his ranks. His watchful gaze follows hotel guests as
they pass by in the hall. On the other hand, anyone who looks at The
Portrait of Bernardo de Galvez the wrong way can expect to be quickly put in their place. The general does not tolerate any insubordination
[“in-sub-bored-din-nation”] and will cast a disciplinary [“diss-ah-plin-nare-ree”]
glare that has sent shivers down the spine of many hotel visitors before. This goes double if you want to take the general’s
picture. Bernardo de Galvez requires that you first
politely and humbly [“hum-blee”] ask if it is okay to photograph him before doing
so. If you don’t properly obtain his permission,
then the photograph never comes out correctly. This was confirmed on two separate occasions
– first by a Houston news reporter, and then later by a paranormal investigator. The news reporter’s camera simply locked
up and refused to take the shot. When the paranormal investigator tried, all
they ended up with was a blurry photo. When they took a closer look, however, it
was clear that they were looking at a side profile of the general’s angry skull. 6. “Man Proposes, God Disposes [“Diss-spo-zes”]:
The Royal Holloway [“Hollow-way”] is one of the most advanced learning institutions
in all of the United Kingdom, training the next generation of management experts, artists,
and scientists on how to become great leaders of tomorrow. These students are some of the brightest folks
in the entire country, and they won’t hesitate to tell you all about a cursed painting that’s
capable of turning their minds into mush. The painting was created by Edwin Henry Landseer
[“Land-see-er”], a talented artist whose animal paintings were so realistic that they
attracted attention from Queen Victoria herself. In 1864 he painted his darkest piece yet. In it, two ferocious artic polar bears feast
on the remains of a frozen shipwreck. One of them looks straight at the viewer while
the other is busy gnashing [“nash-shing”] on human bones with glee. The tattered sail of the boat rises up to
form Death’s shroud, and the fallen mast looks like Death’s scythe [“sythe” (pronunciation
video here)]. It’s called Man Proposes, God Disposes,
and Edwin Henry Landseer based this painting on Franklin’s expedition [“ex-spe-dish-shin”]. This was a real life tragedy where over 100
men became trapped in the ice and died before their two boats could find a trade route in
the artic. The painting has been causing academic problems
for students going as far back as the 1920s. It is known to curse the entire class with
bad luck, but how close you sit to it seems to matter, too. Any student unlucky enough to sit right in
front of it is guaranteed to fail their exams. As history shows, however, the polar bear’s
stare can make students lose a lot more than their grade point average – like their sanity. In 1970, one student just couldn’t take
it anymore and demanded to sit farther away from the haunted painting. The professor refused to change their seating
arrangements. Only when the painting was covered with a
flag would the student sit down and take their test. Ever since then, covering the painting with
a flag has become a tradition every year around exam time. This story is the one that the college has
no problem admitting, but there’s a darker example that Royal Holloway administrators
will never own up to. At one point, a student is said to have been
taking their exam while sitting directly in front of the painting. They glanced up from their paper and found
themselves entranced [“in-tranced”] by the polar bear’s savage eye. The student scribbled “the polar bears made
me do it” on the school exam and went back to their dorm room to commit suicide. Of course, Royal Holloway denies that this
legend is real, but the students swear it’s true, and they have no problem sharing what
really happened with anyone who is willing to listen. 5. “The Dead Mother”: Edvard [“Ed-vard”]
Munch was a famous 1800s Norwegian [“Nor-we-gen”] painter whose life was constantly plagued
by tragedy. His brother, sister, and mother all passed
away from tuberculosis [“two-berk-you-low-sis”] when he was a young boy, and his religious
father explained to him that their deaths came as divine punishment for their sins. This left a bleak [“bleek”] and unhappy
impression on Edvard’s childhood that he carried with him throughout his adult years. The Norwegian artist is best-known for painting
The Scream, which shows a skeletal [“skel-let-tel”] figure shrieking over a bridge. If you’ve ever seen the Scream movies before,
then know that this painting is where the killer gets his mask from. But that’s not Edvard Munch’s only contribution
to modern horror. There’s another painting called The Dead
Mother. It shows a small traumatized girl standing
near her mother’s body as she slowly succumbs [“suck-comes”] to tuberculosis. Much like the figure in The Scream, the little
girl faces the viewer and she grabs the sides of her head in shock. It’s almost as if she is begging the audience
for help, yet the faraway look in her eyes shows that she has already broken free from
reality. Many think Edvard Munch managed to transfer
his emotional anguish into the painting and gave it life. Previous owners of the painting say that the
girl’s piercing blue eyes will follow them as they move. If it’s quiet enough, they also claim to
be able to hear the rustle [“Russel”] of the mother’s sheets. 4. “Love Letters”: There’s an old hotel
in Texas with a lot of strange happenings. It’s said to be haunted by multiple ghosts. First, there’s the ghost of the original
owner, who fills the halls with the smell of his cigar smoke. Next there’s the spirits of two brides who,
despite never knowing each other, each committed suicide in the same room while on honeymoon. Lastly, there’s Samantha Houston, a four-year-old
girl who lives inside of a self-portrait called Love Letters. It all started in 1887 when a Texas senator
stayed at the Driskill [“Dris-kill”] Hotel while on official state business. He brought with him his adorable daughter,
Samantha, and he let her play by herself while he was away. She managed to fall down a large flight of
stairs to her death while chasing after a ball one day. Seven days later, visitors would see her bouncing
the same ball in the lobby. She could also be heard giggling near the
ladies’ room as well as by the stairs where she died. The paranormal sightings of Samantha Houston
don’t end there. Shortly after the tragic accident, her wealthy
father hired a painter to commemorate [“come-mem-more-rate”] her death with a grand portrait. It seems as if her spirit transferred itself
inside of the canvas shortly after it was hung on the wall. In the picture she holds flowers and looks
innocent, but if you stare for long enough, hotel staff and guests say that the expression
changes. Oftentimes her mouth widens into a full smile,
but she doesn’t always seem to be in such a good mood. Some visitors say that the picture makes them
feel violated and nauseous. Sometimes they even feel like they are being
lifted into the air, not unlike the sensation of falling. Likewise, when Samantha feels like playing
a joke, she will shake the door handles of the Yellow Rose Suite [“Sweet”] that’s
located next to her painting to let people know she is there. 3. “Pogo the Clown”: John Wayne Gacy [“Gace-cee”]
was a depraved [“dee-praved”] serial killer who murdered over 30 young men throughout
the 1970s. He would usually invite them over his house
and tell them that he wanted to show them a magic trick using a pair of handcuffs. Since he was a clown with a good-standing
reputation within the community, most people let him put them in the handcuffs. Next thing they knew, they were handcuffed
to a bed or a chair to be tortured for hours. Gacy would suffocate them slowly after raping
them. Sometimes he would kill two men a night. When he was convicted and thrown in prison,
Gacy began painting. There are a lot of people out there who collect
memorabilia [“mem-more-rah-beel-lee-ah”] from murderers, and therefore a lot of money
to be made. In 2001, a man named Nikki Stone bought a
portrait of Gacy for $3 thousand dollars. It was signed by his alter-ego, “Pogo the
Clown”. Shortly after Nikki Stone bought the painting,
he noticed a string of bad luck followed him. First his dog suddenly died and then his mother
discovered that she had cancer. Nikki Stone was a superstitious [“super-stish-shish”]
person and gladly let a friend keep the painting at their house for a while. While they were hanging onto it, their close
neighbor died in a car crash. When a second friend took ahold of the painting,
they attempted suicide. Even Hollywood isn’t safe from the serial
killer’s cursed art. Famous actor Johnny Depp [“Dep”] once
bought a John Wayne Gacy painting from a tattoo artist who he knew. When he brought it home, the painting gave
off a vibe that disturbed everyone so badly that, as he put it, “no one wanted to have
anything to do with it”. He got rid of the artwork shortly thereafter. 2. “The Anguished [“Ang-guished”] Man”:
Sean Robinson inherited The Anguished Man from his grandmother after she died, though
why anyone would want it is anyone’s guess. In the picture, a mutant-looking figure with
a hole for a mouth and boiled skin soundlessly screams against a bright blue background. It’s quite haunting to look at, and also
apparently quite haunted as well. According to Sean, his grandmother kept the
painting locked away in her attic for 25-years. The artist who created it mixed his own blood
with the paint. After he was finished, he killed himself. Exactly how his grandmother knew this was
beyond Sean’s knowledge, but he did know what she claimed to have seen. His grandmother would hear crying and other
strange sounds coming from the attic. It sounded like voices from another world. She also was sure that she once saw the spirit
of the artist herself. He was a shadowy figure that darted past. It only happened once, but she was convinced
that something bad would happen if she got rid of the painting, so she kept it out of
fear. She definitely did not want to insult the
dead person who created it. If that painting was any indication, then
she definitely did not want to get on this creature’s bad side. When Sean received the painting, the first
thing he tried to do was track down its original owner. He had no such luck. Still, he began to experience the same strange
activities that his grandmother spoke of. He heard the same strange crying gurgles and
saw a shadowy figure throughout his house. When his son said that a presence pushed him
down the stairs, Sean knew that he had to react. He set up a camera and recorded the painting. After checking the footage eight hours later,
Sean is shocked by what he finds. Scraping noises are coming from within the
painting itself. He leaves the camera on for another night. When he checks in the morning, he finds that
at 4 in the morning the door to the right of the painting slams shut while everyone
is sleeping. Sean leaves the camera on for five more days,
and each night something stranger than previous night happens. Banging noises, moaning, and other disturbances
are all recorded. At one point, Sean’s wife says she felt
someone touch her hair in the bathroom. That night, he saw a roaming mist at the top
of his stairs. Then, on the last night, Sean finally records
a white figure sprinting across the room. Terrified, he uploads the whole thing on YouTube
for the world to see. Now that he is expecting a child, he decided
to put the painting into a storage unit for safekeeping. Maybe his son will inherit it when he grows
old enough to accept the cursed family heirloom [“air-loom”]. 1. “Ivan the Terrible Kills His Son”: Ivan
[“Eye-vin”] the Terrible was a Russian czar [“zar”] who beat his son to death
after he tried to protect his own wife. A famous artist named Ilya [“Eel-ya” (video
pronunciation here)] Repin [“Rep-pin”] (video pronunciation here)] recaptured the
moment in his painting called Ivan the Terrible Kills His Son, which shows the crazed leader
cradling his son while staring straight ahead with a crazed look. When the painting was first unveiled at the
Tretyakov [“Tret-zi-cough” (video pronunciation here)] Gallery, it caused the crowd to go
into hysterics [“his-stare-ricks”]. Some people wept, some went into a coma-like
state, and others became murderously angry. It evoked [“ee-voked”] such a strong reaction
that it was as if the painting had been possessed by Ivan’s son himself. In 1913, a fellow painter named Abram Balashov
[“A-bram” “Bal-lah-shof” (video pronunciation here)] took one look at the painting and went
insane. He took out a pocket knife and slashed the
painting three times while shouting “Stop the bloodshed”. What he could have been seeing is anyone’s
guess. He was slicing directly into Ivan’s staring
face while he screamed. Abram was taken away to a mental institution
and never let out. Many say that he was crazy to begin with,
but many others say that the man was of sound mind on that day until he saw Ivan’s eyes
staring back at him. The painting’s creator was getting older
at this point, but he wanted to prove that he still had his talents. Ilya Repin calmly repainted the slashed face
into its former horrifying expression. It has been restored since and continues to
haunt spectators to this day.

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