one woman's view into a world of creativity

Fake Artwork

Selected quotes taken from “Fake artwork keeps popping up for sale: It is a growing problem without a clear solution,” by Patricia Cohen.  Published in Scene, page 10, for the Friday Jan. 4 – Thursday Jan. 10 edition.

The resale of fakes is a persistent problem without a good solution, say collectors, dealers, artist estates and law enforcement agencies.  Although the Federal Bureau of Investigation can seize forgeries in criminal cases, these represent only a tiny portion of the counterfeit art that is circulating.

When it comes to undisputed fakes, law enforcement officials try to halt resales by stamping such works as fake or, in rare cases, destroying them.  Each option has drawbacks, including the possibility of mistakenly destroying an authentic work.

Jack Cowart, executive director of the Lichtenstein Foundation, said that during the years that the foundation authenticated works by Roy Lichtenstein, he regularly noticed that collectors informed that they had a fake would later quietly sell it as genuine.

All of this and more, from:

I found this article to be thought-provoking.  It highlights the area where artwork and morals meet.  It also made me question forged artwork.  Can any artwork be truly fake?  I understand that these artworks are considered fake because they are pretending to be created by someone they aren’t.  But someone had to create them, and it seems like that makes them a genuine piece of art.  They are deceitful, but still inherently have some value as a creative product.  The quote about destroying declared fraud artwork made me cringe, especially because sometimes artwork stamped as fake later turns out to be authentic.

What are your thoughts?  How do you feel about Cohen’s article?


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