Fakes, art fraud, forgery, art fraud and art forgery activities, Freemanart consultancy archive files. Dali, Picasso

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Art  Fraud  &  Illicit  Art  &  Forgery    Activities

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Arty-Facts: We specialize in the identification of art fraud and forgery internationally, conduct art authentication investigations, detailed academic multilingual archival research and forensic analysis. Undertaking due diligence studies and Provenance inquiries. Working from bases and labs strategically located in North America, the UK and Europe.







Experts say that up to 1/2 of all limited edition prints on the art market are actually fake reproductions or bear false signatures!


Of Joan Miró aquatints, Sotheby’s and Christies will only offer them for sale from the 1960's and only if there is a correct well established and fully proven provenance.



Is either one right?




Sotheby’s and Christies will also no longer consider selling Salvador Dalí prints executed later than 1930 because there are so many fakes in circulation.






The majority of fake prints are imported from Poland and Russia and the former Czechoslovakia.



Arguably, the most faked artists in history are:

Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot

Pablo Picasso
Salvador Dali
Honore Daumier
Vincent van Gogh
Kazimir Malevich
Amedeo Modigliani
Frederic Remington
Auguste Rodin
Maurice Utrillo





We see more

fake Pablo Picasso drawings, prints and paintings

than any other artist's artwork.


Fake art



From the enquiries we receive and the number of investigations we undertake

our top artists on the list of the most

faked paintings, drawings and prints are:


PICASSOPablo Ruiz Picasso

Chagall Marc

DEGAS: Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas

MIRO: Joan Miró i Ferrà

Van GOGH: Vincent Willem van Gogh

COROT: Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot


Cortes Edouard

Gauguin Paul


Turner JMW (easily also the most misattributed.)

RENOIR: Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Monet Claude

COURBET: Jean Désiré Gustave Courbet

LOWRY: Laurence Stephen Lowry

POTINIKOV: Ivan Pavlovich Pokitonov

ROUSSEAU: Henri Rousseau





A good forger attempts to deceive the

naked human eye.

It's part of the challenge in the game he plays.

Deceiving science in expert hands is however, practically impossible!"






Jean Baptiste COROT

fake Corot


  It's famously said that Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, the French Impressionist painter, produced about 3,000 works of art in his life.

But in the USA alone, there are estimated to be about 8,000 of his works of art !

The mathematics are simple.


Of Mr. Picasso though, it's probably much, much worse !



Fake Goya Painting

Fake Goya Painting






So what's this all about Jacopo Poggibonsi

"The Fake Faker"


 Students of art history are ultimately pointed towards the standard reference tomes in relation to the published biographical information on this artist, or lack of it.

You should all clarify its completeness and establish its accuracy.

Look a little harder and deeper at the story, as all the pointers are there and the truth stares you in the face. All may not be quite as it seems?









Picasso fake

Picasso? Serigraph.



Picasso original 1901




Picasso fake

Small Pierrot- Lithograsph Picasso


 The white on green Pierrot image (above left) is a modern silk screen (or serigraph) this image sent to us by an American client who bought it believing it to be an original print by Picasso.


It is not the lithograph referred to as "Small Pierrot" of a much later date, illustrated to the right and based on Picasso's gouach of 1901 (centre)

It is an entirely different beast altogether, so Picasso Bloggers, please check your facts.

 The American printed commercially produced serigraph, is in fact an unlicenced variant of an original Picasso work (seen above and painted in gouache and executed by Picasso in 1901) But the white on green print was presented and marketed as an original Picasso work of art fraudulently.


Arty-Fact: Picasso didn't do any silk screens or serigraphs!







FAKE Certificates of Authenticity





   It was recently drawn to our attention that  an EBAY seller had posted for sale a 'Picasso' - supported it would seem by this fake certificate of authenticity that he created for

#Item # 290103.        

  He's a student at university in the USA, claimed that Freemanart had authenticated the fake work he was selling and included that fact and a COA in the EBAY descriptor.

He openly lied that we supplied him directly with this fake Certificate of Authenticity as shown on the right.

A few problems here:

Number one: We would never issue a COA as no one other than the internationally recognised and legally appointed expert ca. In this case the Picasso Administration. Only they, in the final analysis can underpin or substantiate any claim for authentication.

And Two: This certificate of authenticity is printed on American LEGAL size paper ie: 8.5 × 14 inches,  or 216 × 356 mm. in size

We are based in the UK and therefore use the international standard ISO 216  - A4  paper, measuring 210 by 297 millimetres ( 8.27 in × 11.7 in) for letters.

Silly - Silly man on two counts!


Fake COA           



PLEASE NOTE: Freemanart will never issue certificates of authenticity.

If you see one it is bogus and a forgery. It does not bear our Logo and most definitely is not Mr. Freeman's signature.

If you do see one like it - DO NOT BUY THE ARTWORK that it purports to support  and please report the seller directly to the police.








  There are literally thousands of bogus and totally worthless Certificates of Authenticity floating about the art world. They accompany works of art building some form of confidence in a buyers eyes.

So you would be very wise to ask your lawyer to investigate and define the legal standing of any COA before accepting it as being any guarantee of authenticity what so ever.

It is as fake as the work is if its not presented by the legally appointed and recognised international authority on the artist.

Certificate of Authenticity:

 If the Certificate of Authenticity does not bear the authenticators name, address and is dated, also confirming his QUALIFICATIONS to justify the statement of authentication he is making, be very, very wary!

If he has nothing to hide he will have no problem clearly identifying himself .

 He will also very succinctly define, correctly, title and specify the measurements of the piece. After all, a certificate of authenticity is a document giving a guarantee of legitimacy and obviously needs to be filled out correctly

 In the authentication of a work claiming to be by any of the worlds principal artists, a little homework will show you that only certain experts and authorities, such as the legal copyright holders or administrators of that artist, appointed review boards, committees, panels of experts, or members of the artists family, can guarantee and underpin  either the authenticity itself, or fully corroborate and establish an unshakable attribution that is internationally accepted.

A very thorough and convincing case must be presented to those in authority to achieve this.


 The so called 'Certificate of Authenticity' seen above, supporting the authenticity of a so called 'Dali limited edition print' that we investigated , has loopholes never spotted by the purchaser who is now down by six thousand US dollars in the fraud.


 We have blocked out the name of the owner of the print this accompanied for security and confidentiality and we also disguised the signature of the issuer, as well as the name of the appraisal company who sold the prints.


This is because we could be sued for breach of their own copyright and defamation of character if we revealed it ! 

They have character ????










Fake, signed celebrity photos & autographs.


 Freemanart have investigated a glut of fake autographed photos which unfortunately are a bad reflection on a great public service as they had all been purchased through Ebay ®

 Note that the worry for us here is that several of our clients came to us for the authentication of autographs and all from different locations.

 Sadly, the majority of these celebrity autographs and autographed photos were executed using an Autopen. This is a  mechanical device that duplicates human autographs.

Though the descriptors on Ebay ® claim vehemently they are not and are completely original autographs.

The Autopen is a machine which has been widely used by celebrities, personalities and even royalty when they are far too busy to sign rafts of documents or requests for signed images.

Take for instance, the obvious examples which follow: The hundreds of thousands of requests from fans for autographed copies of photos of the Beatles in the 60's

Consider then, what would be the vast number of these machine duplicated autographs in circulation?


Fake Lennon autograph

Auto pen signed copy of a

John Lennon Photograph.



Fake apollo 11 autographs  
Fake Ali autograph

 ^ The official NASA photo - Autopen signed image of the crew of Apollo 11. The first manned landing on the moon in July 1969. Commander Neil Alden Armstrong, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins & Lunar Module Pilot 'Buzz' Aldrin.

All were happy to sign their signature which were copied onto a matrix to be duplicated mechanically.





 ^ An Auto pen signed photograph of the incomparable Mohammad Ali / Cassius Clay. Who is considered to be one of the greatest heavyweight championship boxers of all time


Wherever there is celebrity status to any degree, Autpens are used. Sports, music, film, governmental.

Even Presidents .

Fake Nixon Autograph

Fake Lady Diana autograph


Even her Christmas cards were more often than not signed using an Autopen



Fake Babe Ruth autograph

^ Babe Ruth: Signed baseballs used Autopen technology to recreate his autograph. Causing us even more headaches when trying to authenticate legitimate signed examples!



HRH Diana Princess of Wales.







Fake Michael Jordan autograph

Michael Jordan

Fake Elvis Autograph



 The key feature about Autopen signed autographs, is that the stylus that transfers the ink to the photo surface is held vertically in the machine as it copies the autograph from the matrix.

 This means that unlike your own signature, which is created using a pen held at an angle, there is no THICK  to  THIN variation in the line .

It is all very similar in its thickness and also in its tone.

Compared to the real thing





Fake Star Wars autograph

Star Wars  1977 ?



 Our fraud investigation this time concerned the movie 'Star Wars', with a photo very similar indeed to the one above, signed in Autopen by Harrison Ford... But the one we investigated was signed by all the cast - At least allegedly !


 Neatly bearing autographs of several of its original cast, who if you recall were; Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Sir Alec Guinness, Peter Cushing, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, David Prowse and Kenny Baker, it should be worth a lot of money to collectors, if original and from around 1977 ?


 The autographs were nice bright and sharp, blue and black signatures, emblazoned over the respective stars images. But far too bright for us!

 The celebrity photograph containing the suspicious autographs that we examined was identified to have been printed on Fuji, Fujicolor Crystal Archive Professional Paper, which we are told by the makers' Fuji,' was introduced only in 2001   Certainly NOT  1977 !

The first big mistake made by the seller - a crook and a swindler, but a very stupid crook indeed !!




 This photo, the print itself, irrespective of the autographs it bears, can therefore only be a reprint of the original obviously. The film Star Wars was out well before the Fuji paper was ever produced.  It can therefore be nothing else but a fake and by selling it as original, a fraud.

It was not an 'original print' from the year 1977, or even 1988 as was claimed by the Ebay seller & therefore it is in no way connected directly with the film.

The years simply don't add up........ But Its gets worse!


 This EBAY seller seems magically to have been able to collect hundreds of these celebrity photographs over the years himself, incredibly, all  signed in the same colour ink pens and all on the same sort of modern photographic paper!

He must have stood waiting in the rain for the stars for hours! 

This one case though was a particularly interesting and shows just how remiss some of the Ebay ® sellers are in covering up their tracks!

In fact, it's just plain stupid of them because they can end up in prison for fraud!




Fake autograph

 < Here is the 'Autopen' signed autograph section of the whole photo showing Sir Alec Guinness who magnificently played the role of Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars film.

Taken in context, cut out of the Star Wars cast photograph we examined.

The Second big mistake by the crooked seller is this ;


Sir Alec Guinness died on Monday, 7th August 2000 at the age of 86 years.

That's a full year before the photographic paper his autograph is signed on was invented - 2001 !


From BBC News. Monday, 7 August, 2000 "……."The hospital would not reveal the cause of death, but Sir Alec had been suffering from ill health for a number of years. He had chronic glaucoma and had undergone cataract surgery to restore his vision".




  So our not so ultra intelligent Ebay fraudster, wants us to believe that incredibly, Sir Alec himself had managed to come back to life in 2001, a full year later, completely resurrected, but this time as a partially sighted man, eager and willing to sign this photo, just for the seller!  








Fake Picasso

PICASSO - A Question of Authenticity.  Is this a real Picasso Drawing?


 The pen and ink Picasso drawing on brown paper (illustrated left) is not authentic. It is a fake Picasso drawing.  Signature and inscription study and academic research confirmed to us that it is not consistent with known works of Picasso.  Neither is the paper it is drawn on, which was not made until 1982.

This is a kind of a giveaway really, as Picasso died in 1973! 

Even so, the buyer, our client, lost himself a cool $10,000.00 for that very simple mistake!

A great shame he didn't come to us sooner!








Most of the fakes we see at Freemanart, naturally do have the big names, the celebrities of the art world and therefore give promise to big money values and even BIGGER long term profits for the buyer!

Messrs: Picasso, Degas, Miro, Chagall and Dali are the most notoriously faked in the prints world and the most often presented culprits as forgeries both in type of print and with prints bearing forged signatures. Appearing far too regularly on our authentication  investigation schedule.







In the course of just one week, we identified a string of 'big name' fraudulent prints which have emerged from the USA

with clients losing over $35,000.00 on their earlier art investments!





Tip of the week on Buying Prints - REPEATED.


Be really cautious, if not totally skeptical of a Certificate of Authenticity which;

a/ Does not contain the addresses and the qualifications of the authenticator

b/ COA's that are not dated

c/ And - Those that don't carry accurate information and description about the print or work you are buying.

Sometimes the title of the work may be just slightly different than its actual legitimate title as it appears in the Catalogue raisonné.


If the authentication paperwork, especially for a graphic work doesn't tally with the catalogue listing for the art work and the physical sizes of the artwork doesn't add up either, it's rather a bit like being an 1/8th. of an inch off the edge of a cliff.






Conspiracy & 'Mail Fraud'



Fake Dali prints

As defined by the Credit Research Foundation is as follows:

Mail fraud: The use of the U.S. Mail to defraud companies or individuals.

This has become one of the main statutes to prosecute individuals on federal fraud charges. Prosecution under the mail fraud statute must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt:

Conspiracy: An agreement by two or more persons to commit a crime, fraud, or other wrongful act.





Hilda Amiel: (C 1923) American

 Hilda Amiel, was a 70 year old grandmother from New York who was accused of masterminding the world’s largest fine art print counterfeiting operation. An operation which is conservatively estimated to have generated massive public losses at the retail level & was associated with counterfieit works of four principal artists; Salvador Dali, Marc Chagall, Joan Miro and Pablo Picasso.

The figure was believed to be up to $1 billion dollars worldwide.


 It was claimed that she, assisted by 'others', flooded the art market with prints purportedly by or attributed to Picasso and Dali and other great modernists in the eight years before she was arrested. But as public record has it, this tuned out to be a family affair.

 Before her death, she was seen to be cooperating with lawyers, having been arrested after 'Operation Bogart,' lead by U.S. Postal Inspector Jack Ellis, by making a lengthy videotape confession explaining how her late husband, Leon Amiel, who had started his career as a highly respectable dealer, was extremely close to some of the world's greatest artists such as Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso.

Hilda Amiel had told defence lawyers, that the younger Amiel girls that were charged along with her with mail fraud for selling the fake Salvador Dali prints etc. couldn't possibly have known that the family business was illegitimate.


 It was revealed in 1993 that Amiel had warehoused over 83,000 fake prints which themselves could have netted £325 million on the art market!. However, Hilda Amiel, died before her trial began, at the age of 71.


 Police had charged Hilda Amiel, her daughters, Kathryn and Joanne and her granddaughter, Sarina, with conspiracy and mail fraud in connection with the sale of the fake prints through their company 'Original Artworks.' This was believed to be part of Leon Amiel Publishers Inc. and Amiel Book Distribution Corp. Both were founded by Hilda Amiel's late husband, Leon Amiel, who had died in 1988. (He was also implicated in a separate illicit art affair over Dali which is covered in depth elsewhere on the Internet.)


 The New York state jury found Kathryn Amiel guilty of some 23 counts of mail fraud, Joanne guilty of 15 counts of mail fraud and Sarina guilty of 18 counts of mail fraud.

The Amiel women were sentenced on May 12, 1995 - Kathryn to six-and-a-half years, Joanne to three years and 10 months and Sarina to two years and nine months. They began serving their federal prison terms in November 2000 after the rejection of their appeals.

About Fakes II








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Honore Daumier





















































Fakes & Fake Art - Certificates of Authenticity | art fraud forgery | Freemanart Authentication experts

Fakes & Fake Art - forgery and Certificates of authenticity, Picasso, Dali, prints fakes and Fake Celebrity Autographs

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