Forgeries

Science is making it harder to get away with forgery in art. Here's a story in the latest edition of Nature .

Police rely on radiocarbon dating to identify forged paintings (nature.com)


Comments

  • I've seen one fake or fortune where a person had a Chagall for years and spent a huge sum of money to acquire it and later found Phthalo blue in it during testing! It was even present in a catalogue when he bought...later removed. Terrible misfortune.
  • edited December 2022
    Yes, @Kaustav. If I were going to spend that much on a painting, I'd want it tested first. And that is now possible. So today, if anyone wanted to forge a painting, it would not be enough to make the canvas look old, they would have to get canvas that was made in the era the paining is purported to be from because the canvas can be dated with this method.  And, of courses, you wouldn't be using newer pigments like the phthalos.
  • I think there has been a culture in the past, and probably still goes on, where dealers and galleries have suspected that a works they have or are selling may be fake but too much money is at stake for a little thing like that to get in the way.

     :) 
    judithtassieguyallforChristdewald
  • Interesting. Radiotesting requires to remove a small piece of paint. Another solution that we use and that is less known is portable Raman spectrocopy (in honor to indian sir raman who discovered the effect) where you can basically identify pigments through the spectra of vibration of their molecular bonds. It's non destructive so very desirable for pieces that cannot be damaged or moved. Our heritage team go around the world with that, even to analyse momies in egypt, stained glasses in cathedrals, all sort of things and art.
    kaustavMjudithtassieguy
  • They should have used Tassie Brown, made from genuine Australian blood, sweat and tears!
    kaustavMjudithAbstractionPaulB
  • This was an interesting statement. I would love to understand this more but they didn't enlarge upon it:
    Forgeries pollute people’s understanding of artworks’ meaning, Tummers says. “If we don’t weed them out carefully, it might really distort our understanding of our own heritage and our own history.”

  • edited December 2022
    judith said:
    This was an interesting statement. I would love to understand this more but they didn't enlarge upon it:
    Forgeries pollute people’s understanding of artworks’ meaning, Tummers says. “If we don’t weed them out carefully, it might really distort our understanding of our own heritage and our own history.”

    I read it simply as meaning if some of the works we currently attribute to, say, Van Eyk's famous visit to Naples, and write about these in art history and delve into what it says about him and his era... are actually forgeries done in 1920s... then this so-called history is fiction.
    A tiny piece of irony is I know nothing about Van Eyk's visit to Naples or the style he used or even if he ever went there. I just made that up. But then we don't have to feel angry about the forgers of the 1920s either.
    kaustavM
  • Richard_P said:
    They should have used Tassie Brown, made from genuine Australian blood, sweat and tears!
     :) 
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