BBC News covers the Brooklyn Museum’s exhibition of fake coptic and pagan sculptures. The museum has a large collection acquired during the years after World War 2 but recent opinion puts a third of the works beyond bounds. They’re fakes and the museum decided to make a show of it:
Experts say there is no way of knowing exactly who carved the limestone fakes, though one theory suggests they may have been produced by prisoners-of-war in Egypt.
Coptic and Pagan sculpture flooded the Western art market after World War II.
Edna Russmann, curator in charge of the exhibition – entitled Unearthing The Truth – hopes it will prompt galleries to examine their own collections more thoroughly.
“I know that other museums have fakes, (in) all kinds of fields and all kinds of subjects,” she said.
Some of the fakes are easy to spot, but others display a high level of craftsmanship. Set among them are genuine works that have been touched up or re-carved.
The forgeries place a greater emphasis on Christian iconography than many of the real works – a sign, say experts, of them being made to order for European and North American buyers.
Fake Art Stars in New York Show (BBC News)