Information for collectors

July 29, 2014

The series Treasure Detectives presents experiences, instructions and techniques how to uncover a fake. On the website of the series can be also found interesting short videos by Curtis Dowling called "How to spot a fake".

The USA exhibition of forgeries made by a well known forgers was given great attention

August 7, 2014

In Springfield, USA opened an exhibition of masterpieces by well-known forgers. This news was even announced by the Russian television. The reason for that might be that Russian collectors are often targeted by forgers.
It seems that the exhibition has an outstanding success, visitors are interested in this topic. The exhibition tells about forgers' fates, methods of forgery and means of forgeries reaching collections of various museums and collectors.
The amount of forgeries on the art market is really striking. The whole exhibition is certainly serves an educational and commercial purpose well. It also shows the rising danger for collection-creating institutions, collectors and investors. Probably intentionally, but Han van Meegeren succeeded to fool the experts with his Vermeers, and in the Czech Republic some „experts" have marked fakes as originals for many times, and they keep producing new findings. How is it possible? The reason might be that the state doesn't have the power to do something with that and professionals lack an interest in changing it.

All is well that ends well

August 7, 2014

In June 2012 Olomouc authorities were rattled by a 415 millions CZK robbery (equivalent to €15 millions). The most expensive pieces among stolen items were drawings of P. Picasso and a painting of A. Renoir.
Some time ago police authorities informed about jailing a gang which robbed and killed some wealthy businessmen. The interesting fact was that among victims was the owner of the above mentioned drawings and the painting.
But not long after the gang members have been jailed raised a question concerning the originality of paintings stolen. It won't be easy to answer this question, probably impossible until those drawings and painting are found.
But in case that those objects were forgeries, the owner might have lost his life because of priceless fakes. That would be really unfortunate.

Information for collectors

August 7, 2014

The series called Treasure Detectives describes experiences and provides guidance and practices on how to discover forgeries. You can find some episodes we translated on our website. Also you can visit the oficial website of the series and watch some other short insteresting videos in which Curtis Dowling briefly explains how to spot a fake. We are planning to add those videos on our website as well soon.

Forgeries? Perhaps Faux Masterpieces

May 16, 2014

After reading the article you will find out that Ken Perenyi certainly wasn't an ordinary forger. The quality of his forgeries was certainly quite high. The article states that dealer gives buyer a document to sign in which the buyer confirms that he is informed about buying a reproduction. This is the way the dealer tries to avoid an accusation of selling forgeries. The question is if there is a sign or marking on such paintings by which one can tell that this is a reproduction. And if such a thing is written only in the certificate, or if it's possible to remove the existing marking from a painting, then it's just a matter of time when someone tries to misuse it.

The destruction of the Chagall's fake?

April 18, 2014

Reading the article many collectors and investors in the first place, might wonder at what should they do in order not to end up in the same situation like a collector named Martin Lang. The questions bothering everyone are:
- Is it right to destroy discovered forgeries?
- Doesn't such destruction leads to a risky situation to which collectors don't want to be exposed?
- Are heirs really the right authority?

Those are questions that can cause endless arguments, but they also certainly lead to the root of the problem and its solutions. From our point of view it is not necessary to destroy fake artworks, but instead to prevent their reappearance on the market. The market turned to the point when an artwork must have a clear provenance and a confirmation from a reliable authority. And if an artwork is not accompanied by expertise from a relevant authority, it becomes very difficult to sell it. Currently Boards for protection of certain artists' works are considered to be such respected authorities. It is also important to point out that in the past some artists' heirs were involved in fakes distribution. So forgers are also conscious of the need of a reliable expertise. Probably the only possible solution is a complex and objective analysis of various relevant experts protected by the state authority.

A trial of dealers and art forgers in Pilsen

March 20, 2014

Three and half years after the police intervention and several delays in a trial against dealers and art forgers, on March 19th, 2014 finally began the main trial at the regional court in Pilsen. After the speech for the prosecution it would seem that the Pilsner region was a centre of a world-wide illicit trade with works of world renowned painters. Names like Picasso, Klée, Kandinsky, Chagall, Malewicz and Schiele were mentioned many times. The major part of the paintings and drawings of an unknown origin was thought to be bought by the accused in 1993 for 50 000 marks. After 2004 they began selling those paintings. An interesting role played Jiří V. Kotas in this case (a candidate for the Czech president in 1992). Together with the accused Šimon he searched buyers. Kotas was arrested by the local police in 2009 in Ostrava, but later disappeared abroad. It will be also interesting to follow how the judge will evaluate the role of the accused Sýkorová who should have painted different variations of world renowned paintings for Kovářík. One more name is also often mentioned in the accusation. It is Jiří Dvorský, paintings appraising expert. Some time ago he has showed his 'professional skills' in one TV show. This 'expert' stated, that a signature ‚Picasso' on a painting is enough to evaluate such a painting as a Picasso's original and appraise it according to this. He did thousands of expertises this way.
This is the first trial after a long time, which is solving the problematic of selling forgeries. We will follow its progression hoping that it will have a positive feed-back to the society, particularly to artistic, collector and investment groups.

Forged pieces of Jan Zrzavý

January 29, 2014

In 'Fogeries in Czech Republic - actual list' file you can find the list of paintings, which were secured in the Trojan horse case. Some of the known fakes of Jan Zrzavý were later returned to the original owners. Although we trust, that these owners will not let paintings back into circulation, we publish their photos anyway. And I recommend to all interested in works of Jan Zrzavý to have a close look on the list in the above mentioned file. Surely there are better options to spend money on, and better quality images in the collection.


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