In Art, Freedom of Expression Doesn’t Extend to ‘Is It Real?’

June 20th, 2012 | Posted by admin in art | discussion

Informative but depressing article in the New York Times about the fear (there’s that horrible word again) art experts have about admitting they think a valuable art work is not what it seems to be. From Patricia Cohen’s text:

“As spectacular sums flow through the art market and an expert verdict can make or destroy a fortune, several high-profile legal cases have pushed scholars to censor themselves for fear of becoming entangled in lawsuits.

The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation and the Noguchi Museum have all stopped authenticating works to avoid litigation. In January the Courtauld Institute of Art in London cited “the possibility of legal action” when it canceled a forum discussing a controversial set of some 600 drawings attributed to Francis Bacon. And the leading experts on Degas have avoided publicly saying whether 74 plasters attributed to him are a stupendous new find or an elaborate hoax.”

They’ve stopped authenticating works to avoid litigation? This must be just what forgers or owners of fake works want to hear… but the art business is and always has been a fundamentally dodgy business anyway. Read the full article:

Read more about experts and fakes on our site:

Pirate objects

If you hang fake paintings in a museum for long enough, they become real

F for Fake


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