Dealer charged with selling forged Monets, Van Goghs...

September 16 2011

Image of Dealer charged with selling forged Monets, Van Goghs...

Picture: LA Times

A US art dealer has been charged with defrauding a collector out of millions of dollars by selling him fakes. The police allege Matthew Taylor (above) operated a cunning forgery operation:

Taylor allegedly sold the collector more than 100 paintings -- including works that he falsely claimed were by artists such as Claude Monet, Vincent van Gogh, Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko -- for a total of more than $2 million, according to prosecutors.

The indictment charges that Taylor altered paintings from unknown artists to make them appear to be the products of famous artists, and then sold the bogus artwork to the victim at higher prices than their actual worth.

Taylor allegedly put forged signatures on the paintings and painted over or concealed names of the actual artists. The indictment also alleges that Taylor attached labels that falsely represented that the artworks were once part of prestigious collections at famous museums, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Guggenheim Museum.

It's much safer to buy an Old Master...

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