National Gallery of Victoria buys a Van Gogh…err a Rubens? Wait is it a Gavin Turk?

April 11, 2008 · Print This Article

Van Gogh?
Head of a Man is the name given to a $5 million Vincent Van Gogh portrait that was purchased in 1940. Only thing is now no one belives it is a Van Gogh. The Amsterdam Van Gogh Museum performed a 10-month investigation by scholars and has found the portrait was probably painted by a fellow student of Van Gogh in Antwerp or Paris in the mid 1880s. They are absolutely sure though that it is not a forgery since the work makes no attempt to directly mimic or pass itself off in a documented or established way as a Van Gogh. Read more




Ebay Art Scam Broken Up In Chicago

March 20, 2008 · Print This Article

Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall and Andy Warhol were among artists whose works were counterfeited by seven people indicted for two art-fraud schemes that reaped a combined $5 million.

Those charged include three Europeans and residents of New York, Florida and Illinois, Chicago U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald said today in a statement. They sold thousands of fake prints in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Japan and Europe, he alleged.

“Most of us have never owned a work of art signed by Picasso,” Fitzgerald said today at a press conference. Some people who believed they did, he added, “bought fakes.”

Some of the prints in the scam were sold on EBay Inc., the world’s largest online auctioneer, Fitzgerald alleged. Others were funneled through two art dealers in Northbrook, Illinois, prosecutors claimed. Read more




Art Institute of Chicago’s Gauguin sculpture declared a fake

December 12, 2007 · Print This Article

Fake Gauguin

The Art Institute of Chicago announced yesterday that the Gauguin ceramic sculpture “The Faun” which has been on display for about a decade is infact a forgery by Shaun Greenhalgh who is part of a larger family of forgers that has been under investigation by Scotland Yard for some time.

The Museum purchased the sculpture form a private dealer in London, who in turn bought it from a Sotheby’s auction in 1994.

Shaun Greenhalgh received a prison sentence of 4 years and 8 months last month. His mother, Olive, 83, was given a 12-month suspended sentence. The father, George, 84, broker of all the forged objects, had a deferred sentence pending medical reports.

For 17 years, the family carried on one of the most sophisticated forgery operations in modern history, faking scores of objects including antiquities, watercolors, paintings and modern sculpture, authorities said. Many of the pieces were copies of ancient objects or artworks thought to be lost.

UPDATE The Art Newspaper has published that the purchase price of the sculpture that the Art Institute would not like to declare was $125,000. The London dealer that sold it to the Institute bought the piece in 1994 for £20,700 or $42,382. Making a profit of $82,618 on the transaction.