The Times of London reports on a Spanish police raid on a hotel in the Costa del Sol where 81 fake works by Salvador Dali were set to be sold. The works were in a variety of media and a range of prices, including a €1.2 million sculpture:
Police said all the pieces had been taken from France to be sold in Spain. A French man, who was organising the sale, was arrested on charges of falsification of documents and fraud. He has not been named.
Officers from Spain’s national heritage brigade, which deals with art thefts, worked with Interpol to track down the stolen art. According to Interpol reports, 12 pieces, which were thought to be genuine Dali works, had been stolen in Belgium, France and the United States. Another 20 supposedly genuine sculptures had certificates stating their authenticity, said police.
Researchers from the Gala Salvador Dalí Foundation, which safeguards the late artist’s legacy, are today checking the seized art works to see if they are the real thing. Dalí, who died 20 years ago tomorrow at the age of 84, was said to have flooded the art market with thousands of fakes. He is thought to have signed as many as 35,000 blank sheets of paper to which lithographs could later be applied at any time. Some auction houses will not touch his work any more for fear of being duped.
Police smash suspected stolen Salvador Dali auction in Spain (Times of London)