Investigations

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Investigations

The Real Thing?

A fingerprint has intensified the debate about the origin of a mysterious drawing sold at auction for $21,850. Experts don't agree whether it's a 19th–century German work or a genuine Leonardo worth $150 million. Read More

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Investigations

The Brillo-Box Scandal

The discovery that a respected curator produced a set of Andy Warhol Brillo boxes after the artist’s death, passing them off as originals, has created a quandary for dealers, collectors, and scholars—including the experts in charge of authenticating the artist’s work. Read More

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Investigations

The Faking of the Russian Avant-Garde

With invented provenances, unreliable certificates of authenticity, and “rediscovered” works by artists who are lost to history, forgers are flooding galleries and auction houses with Russian avant-garde fakes. A six-month ARTnews investigation reveals that inauthentic works now outnumber authentic ones. Read More

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Investigations

Inside the Gardner Case

After two decades of tips, leads, hunches, forensic tests, psychic visions, and jailhouse confessions, the biggest art heist in history is still unsolved. Read More

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Investigations

The Mauerbach Scandal

An exhibition in Vienna brings to light new evidence of Austria’s reluctance to return art looted by the Nazis. Read More

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Investigations

The Dalí­ Sculpture Mess

A flood of posthumous sculpture by Salvador Dalí­ generates millions of dollars in annual revenue—but the artist’s connection with much of the work is unclear. The market is rife with unreliable information, disputed ownership claims, unauthorized editions, and legal conflict. At least two European police investigations are under way. Read More

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Investigations

The Blue Print

A 50-year-old fingerprint on the side of a paint can fuels an attribution to Jackson Pollock—and charges of forgery. Read More

After The Scream was stolen from the Munch Museum, this reproduction appeared at the Guggenheim—as part of a 2006 campaign launching dark chocolate M&M’s. A reward of 2 million M&M’s was offered for the picture’s recovery.
Investigations

‘The Scream,’ the Thief, and the 2 Million M&M’s

Stolen masterpieces are priceless and worthless at the same time—they’re too hot to sell, and have limited use as collateral. But one criminal tried to use them to sweeten his sentence. Read More

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Investigations

The Mysterious Journey of an Erotic Masterpiece

Femme nue couchée, one of several Courbets owned by the Hungarian Jewish collector Baron Ferenc Hatvany, disappeared after World War II from a Budapest bank vault. The painting resurfaced 50 years later in Slovakia, setting off a cat-and-mouse game that resulted in its restitution to Hatvany’s heirs—who loaned it to the Courbet retrospective at the Grand Palais in Paris. Read More

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Investigations

‘Fools, Show-offs, and Trophy Hunters’

The art thieves in western Europe, says one expert, are mainly the Balkan Bandits. Read More

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Investigations

The Scandal Sweeping Russia’s Art Market

Forgers have been retouching hundreds of works by minor European artists, putting the signatures of major Russian artists on them and selling them for many times their worth. Read More