Let’s go to BM

Fake art stars in New York show
By Matthew Wells
BBC News, New York

An exhibition which has opened in New York takes the unlikely step of placing fake works of art on display.

The Brooklyn Museum, like many others, began buying ancient Coptic and Pagan sculptures after World War II.

However, the museum’s curators recently discovered that roughly a third of their collection is fake.

The resulting exhibition places genuine sculptures from the 4th Century AD alongside a small group of forgeries, probably from the mid-20th Century.

Experts say there is no way of knowing exactly who carved the limestone fakes, though one theory suggests they may have been produced by prisoners-of-war in Egypt.

Coptic and Pagan sculpture flooded the Western art market after World War II.

Edna Russmann, curator in charge of the exhibition – entitled Unearthing The Truth – hopes it will prompt galleries to examine their own collections more thoroughly.

“I know that other museums have fakes, (in) all kinds of fields and all kinds of subjects,” she said.

Some of the fakes are easy to spot, but others display a high level of craftsmanship. Set among them are genuine works that have been touched up or re-carved.

The forgeries place a greater emphasis on Christian iconography than many of the real works – a sign, say experts, of them being made to order for European and North American buyers.

The exhibition continues at the Brooklyn Museum until early May.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Comments welcomed

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s