Summary of “How to Spot a Perfect Fake: The World’s Top Art Forgery Detective”

The authenticity of four, in particular, including the Cranach, has been contested; the art historian Bendor Grosvenor said they may turn out to be “The best old master fakes the world has ever seen.” Ruffini, who remains the subject of a French police investigation, has denied presenting these paintings as old masters at all.
Prof David Ekserdjian, one of the few art historians who doubted that the painting was a Parmigianino, said he just didn’t feel the prickle of recognition that scholars claim as their gift: the intimacy with an artist that they liken to our ability to spot a friend in a crowd.
Over the past two decades, Martin has also become the art world’s foremost forensic art detective.
On the sliding scale of attribution that art historians use – painted by; hand of; studio of; circle of; style of; copy of – each step takes the artist farther from the painting.
Wolfgang Beltracchi, a German artist who served three years in prison for forging paintings worth $45m, surveyed the chemical elements in his works by running them under X-ray fluorescence guns – the same handheld devices, resembling Star Trek phasers, that many art fairs now train upon their exhibits.
Georgina Adam, who wrote Dark Side of the Boom, a book about the art market’s excesses, told me that many forgers are sensibly choosing to falsify 20th-century painters, who used paints and canvases that can still be obtained, and whose abstractions are easier to imitate.
In 2013, investigators learned that the forgeries had been painted by a Chinese immigrant, who was by then 73 years old, in his garage in Queens, and placed with Knoedler by an art dealer who pleaded guilty.
The world of today, the world in which the forgery is being created, is likely to fix itself in some form within the painting – as radioactive dust, perhaps, or as cat hair, or a stray polypropylene fibre.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Atavist Magazine”

Renée Smithuis, a Dutch dealer active at the same time as Jansen, told me, “Everyone knew that Jansen was forging.” Some people worked with him anyway-Smithuis said she did not-because he sold works at relatively low prices.
According to the Sunday Telegraph, the police in Orléans even displayed some of Jansen’s fakes at its headquarters, purportedly to jog the memories of people who might have done business with Jansen in the past.
The Algemeen Dagblad headlined its coverage of the trial, “French justice department has to let go of ‘the swindle of the century.'” The paper also referred to the result of the case against Jansen as a “Black day for justice in France.” Jansen’s lawyer mocked the court’s inability to pin charges on the couple.
Describing an “Ali Baba’s cave of art fakes,” the article reported that Jansen “Accepted responsibility for the works discovered in the raid.” The report continued, “After his arrest, Mr. Jansen displayed his talent to the investigating judge, reproducing several famous artists’ signatures.”
The resulting creative relationship was the reason Jansen forged a Picasso that wound up under a tree in Romania, duping Mira Feticu.
“We just have to agree on one thing: The work we are auctioning was made by Geert Jan Jansen but bears the signature of the original artist. In here it’s a Geert Jan Jansen, but the moment you leave the room, that changes. If you buy it and hang it up in your house, to the outside world it becomes genuine.” Degryse assured the audience that the auction was real, that bids were binding.
People laughed loudly, including at Jansen’s quip that “An Appel a day keeps the doctor away.” Were they taking at face value the claim that Jansen did no harm? I asked the man sitting next to me why he found it all so funny.
Jansen has boasted that he doesn’t copy works, that he “Adds his own” to an existing series, but the paintings at his château told a different story.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Column One: Hollywood scenic painter Mike Denering can’t quite put down his brush”

In his faded jeans, button-down shirt and sneakers that betray a hint of paint speckles, Mike Denering cut an unassuming figure ambling across the Fox Studios lot in Century City.
At 66, Denering is one of Hollywood’s last scenic painters.
Scenic painter Mike Denering in front of a mural, a scene from “The Seven Year Itch” that he restored back in 2016 with artist Jim Katranis on the exterior of Stage 10 at Fox Studios in Los Angeles.
From left are scenic artists Mike Denering, John Moffitt and Jonathan Williams.
Robin Williams in “What Dreams May Come.” Mike Denering and John Moffitt were the lead scenic artists on the 1998 film, using digital and hand-painted elements.
In 1989, Denering bought a house in Sun Valley, a drowsy rustic community at the base of the Verdugo Mountains about 15 miles north of Hollywood.
When Denering started, scenic artists often painted in the plein-air technique – working outside to be able to replicate the gradations of light and color in nature.
Mike Denering was a scenic artist for the 1988 film “Die Hard,” starring Bruce Willis.

The orginal article.

Summary of “For the Love of Orange”

Any color historian will tell you that orange didn’t have a name in English before Europeans encountered the fruit.
Katy Kelleher, writing for The Paris Review, notes that orange was late to be added to the canon of colors: “There is something about every shade of orange that feels secondary.” Medieval Europeans recognized the existence of the color, and it appears in paintings and illuminated manuscripts, though for hundreds of years the only pure orange pigments available were realgar and orpiment, two arsenic-based compounds that were highly toxic.
How must it have felt to see an orange for the first time-did they peel them open with their hands, feeling the spray of citrus oil on their palms? Or did they use a knife, cutting past the white pith? How did it feel to taste the tang of citrus, to let the segments explode-new, beguiling-in one’s mouth? It’s in this moment that the color orange was given a name in the only language I speak.
The 1800s coincided with the arrival of a new synthetic orange pigment, “Chrome orange,” made from the mineral crocoite.
The advent of chrome orange allowed painters to use the color more widely.
The formal pleasures of an orange are never more obvious than in Édouard Manet’s Four Mandarin Oranges, a still life from 1882, painted late in his career.
Mandarin oranges appear frequently in Manet’s late work, but it’s this painting that aligns most closely to how orange makes me feel-a zip of joy in all life’s gray.
It’s one of the abstract paintings he’s best known for, examining the interactions of color: a pure orange panel with a layer of a lighter hue scumbled on top, a rich panel of red paint on the bottom, veiled in lavender purple.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Gustav Klimt in the Brain Lab”

Since winning a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2000, for uncovering the electrochemical mechanisms of memory, Kandel had been thinking about art.
Your Brain on Klimt: Our brains assemble Gustav Klimt’s paintings piece by piece, symbol by symbol, tricking us into sensing the beauty of the whole, Eric Kandel says.
“With Klimt it’s pure hedonic sexuality.” In fact, Kandel said, because Judith I sparked “a fascinating swirl of emotions,” it was influential in setting him off to explore “What we know biologically about the perception of art, the empathy of art, and the emotional response to it.”
At the turn of the 20th century, Kandel said, art that captured people’s internal realities mirrored what scientists were seeing in the lab.
This is where the other half of brain function, the “Top-down process,” was apparent, Kandel said.
Seeing, Kandel stressed, isn’t a matter of our brain working like a camera, freezing images in our head. It’s an act of assembly with numerous brain areas contributing their part.
“Since art arouses emotion, and emotion elicits both cognitive and physiological responses in the observer, art is capable of producing a whole-body response,” Kandel explained.
Before I met Kandel at the Neue Galerie, I tended to side with critics, from both the sciences and arts, who had written neuroaesthetics portrayed the experience of art as little more than a “Programmed response of brain circuitry,” as one critic said of Kandel’s The Age of Insight, and ignored the social and cultural factors that influenced our appreciation and understanding of art.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Did Whitey Bulger Pull Off the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Art Heist for the IRA?”

It’s been nearly 30 years since two conniving art thieves dressed up like Boston cops and sweet-talked their way into the city’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum after closing hours.
The heist, which included works by Rembrandt and Vermeer, remains one of the biggest art thefts on record and, three decades later, one of the most perplexing mysteries art detectives have ever tried to unravel.
Thousands of tips have dissolved into false leads over the decades, but recently, two of the biggest names in art recovery have hinted that the paintings just might be in the hands of what’s left of the old Irish Republic Army or IRA. No one agrees just how they got there, if indeed they are there, which has complicated any chance of collaboration among those searching to bring the art home to Boston.
His veiled “Maybe” echoed an announcement Dutch art detective Arthur Brand made this spring, in which the acclaimed private detective said he had spoken directly to members of the IRA who implied that with immunity and the $10 million award offered by the Gardner museum, they would be ready to give up the raided art.
Anthony Amore, the man in charge of the Isabella Gardner Museum’s security, doesn’t buy for a minute that the art is in the hands of the paramilitary group.
“But there is zero evidence that the IRA has been involved. Everything points to the art being right here in the United States.”
Amore disagrees, insisting that, whether Bulger was involved or not, the art is still in the U.S. He says Americans are “Consumers of stolen art, not exporters of it.”
Amore, who has dedicated his career to the return of the Isabella Gardner art, says he doesn’t do deals with thieves, even if it might mean the safe return of the treasures.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Make your mark: the enduring joy of drawing”

Art starts with a drawing – specifically a drawing by a clever young girl named Kora, otherwise known as the Maid of Corinth.
Picasso’s famous remark, adapted – that it took him only four years to draw like Raphael, but a lifetime to draw like a child – used to be everywhere quoted as a call to break free of academic tradition: no more drawing from plaster casts of Roman sculptures.
Every year, the Royal Drawing School receives hundreds of applications for its unique Drawing Year course, which allows postgraduate students to draw night and day, for free, and with the constant support of tutors who also teach public classes in still life, interior, draped figure, and life drawing in ink, charcoal and even iPad. Collections of drawings are assembled by public museums but also private collectors.
“To draw does not simply mean to reproduce contours; drawing is also expression, the inner contentDrawing is the probity of art.”
Drawing has lately diversified into performance art, with mass gatherings of people drawing together, or artists creating works live in front of an audience.
Even the hoariest old master can look up-to-the-minute when drawing; and a drawing that took days to finish can look as fresh as one made in seconds.
Van Gogh’s drawings are, for me, masterpieces of originality and invention: lines streaking down the canvas on a dark day, so that you realised that rain was in some way comparable to drawing for the artist.
The thing paintings or drawings do least well is depict the passage of time, and I was always frustrated when I was drawing because I couldn’t make stories unfold in time the way I wanted to.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Invention of the ‘Salvator Mundi'”

As of 2005, two paintings remained unaccounted for: Leda and the Swan, a large-scale mythological allegory, and the Salvator Mundi.
A painting believed to be the Salvator Mundi is mentioned in an inventory by one of Leonardo’s students in 1525.
Simon has maintained that it was always his preference that the Salvator Mundi go to a museum, preferably one in the U.S. But he and Parish would not be giving the painting to an institution – neither man was independently wealthy, and the costs to date, from storage to restoration fees, had been substantial.
Penny knew of the Salvator Mundi – he’d seen the painting at Simon’s gallery on a business trip to New York.
In 2011, Simon took the Salvator Mundi back to London, this time with the painting traveling in the plane’s cargo hold in a custom crate designed to insulate it from damage.
A condition of Simon and Parish’s loan of the Salvator Mundi to the National Gallery was that the painting not be actively on sale, or “In the trade,” in art-world parlance.
The advertising blitz that preceded the November auction was light on the details of the restoration – there was one small, blurry pre-restoration photograph of the piece in the 174-page catalogue – and heavy on the kind of language intended to entice trophy hunters: In videos, the painting’s import was likened to “The discovery of a new planet,” and one froth-flecked press release labeled it “The Divine Mona Lisa.” Like a rock star, the Salvator Mundi hit the road, making tour stops in cities thick with wealthy potential buyers – Hong Kong, San Francisco, London.
For the time being, the Salvator Mundi remains in a Switzerland free port – a kind of tax-free haven – while Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman mulls whether he wants to move forward with the gift or keep the painting for himself.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How to move a masterpiece: the secret business of shipping priceless artworks”

The art world prefers it this way: what happens behind the signs reading “No Entry: Installation in Progress” remains a ferociously guarded secret.
How will the art travel, and when? Who pays for insurance and shipping? What kind of “Display furniture” needs to be built? What kind of security systems are in place – attack-proof vitrines, alarms, guards? How about temperature and humidity?
The average price for fine art at auction has nearly doubled since 2000, meaning that the costs of indemnifying works on loan has soared.
Shipping museum-grade art is a specialist business: only a handful of top-flight firms, among them the London-based Momart and Constantine, are trusted by major institutions.
If an overnight stop is required, either a secure, climate-controlled fine art warehouse must be booked en route – there is a network of these across Europe, owned by different shipping firms – or, more likely, someone stays in the truck at all times, to the extent of sleeping in it.
At big museums this will be an in-house team, but many shipping companies now employ their own handlers, who look after every stage of the process, for art fairs and private clients as well as galleries.
Still, Hirst probably holds the record for most-travelled art work: an aluminium spot painting of his was installed on the 2003 Beagle 2 probe destined for Mars, where it was used to calibrate scientific instruments.
“You see the backs of paintings, how things are assembled. You have a Cézanne or Picasso in your hands, and you’ll see a little sketch, or how they’ve reused a bit of canvas.” He laughed softly.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Luxury Paint Company Creating a New Kind of Decorating Anxiety”

Allman told me that Studholme was particularly adept at establishing a visual flow from one room to the next, noting, “I had got stuck with ‘If you put this color in that room, and that color in this room, isn’t that a bit jarring when you walk between them?'” Studholme suggested Railings-the kind of blue-black used to paint the wrought-iron balustrades on Georgian terraces-as a way to link spaces.
The company recommends that, instead of daubing the contents of a sample pot directly onto walls, customers paint two coats on a stiff card that they can hold up all around the room, including in dark corners; this insures that they’ll know how the shades look in a wide variety of light conditions.
Much of the color spectrum was simply unavailable; except for those who could afford lapis lazuli, which was used only in small quantities by fine artists, blue paint didn’t become an option until the eighteenth century, when a German paint manufacturer stumbled upon the iron-based formula for Prussian Blue.
According to Patrick Baty, a historian of paint and the author of “The Anatomy of Color: The Story of Heritage Paints and Pigments,” it was standard for a single shade to be used throughout a house.
At Helme’s urging, the National Trust licensed Farrow & Ball’s oil-based formula and developed a new range of paint colors that were based on the Trust’s most celebrated interiors.
In 2003, the company published a coffee-table book titled “Paint and Color in Decoration.” Handsome photographs showed the company’s paint colors in situ, so that readers could see how Calke Green looked on the walls of the breakfast room at Calke Abbey, a mansion in Derbyshire, before applying it to their own walls.
The best thing that can be said about a new paint color on the walls is that it looks as if it has always been there.
“See, you start with ‘I am going to paint my window frames gray,’ and then you get to ‘I am going to paint my window frames and my walls gray,’ and then ‘I am going to do it in stronger gray,'” she said.

The orginal article.