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01 JUNE 2009

Forged art legacy of Vietnam war

"How many of the paintings displayed at the Vietnamese National Museum of Fine Arts in Hanoi are originals and how many are copies?

That question has been a topic of hot discussion in Vietnam for quite some time.

It is well known among Vietnamese artists that the museum has been hanging works of art that are in fact copies of very famous Vietnamese paintings as some of the originals were either sold or lost.

The leading art historian and Vietnamese painting expert, Nora Taylor, from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, believes that about half of the paintings displayed at the museum are in fact copies.

According to Nguyen Do Bao, the former chairman of the Hanoi Fine Arts Association, the practice began with the best of intentions.

'The practice started during the war (between North and South Vietnam) in the 1960s. Copies were displayed at the museum while the originals were taken away to avoid being damaged during bombing raids,' he explained.

At the time it seemed a great idea, but the problem was that nobody seemed to be in control.

Not all of the original paintings were returned to the museum after the war."
(Ha Mi, 21 May 2009, BBC Vietnamese Service)

[Several museums say they have the original of Playing the O An Quan]



1960sauthenticityauthorshipfake artforgery • Hanoi • Hanoi Fine Arts Association • museum • Nguyen Do Bao • Nora Taylor • painting • Playing the O An Quan • School of the Art Institute of ChicagoSouth-East AsiaVietnamVietnam war • Vietnamese National Museum of Fine Arts


Simon Perkins
29 MAY 2009

BBC Four Arena 1986 television documentary about Salvador Dali



1986 • Amanda Lear • Andre BretonArena (TV series)BBC Four • blank canvas • donkey • eggfake art • Gala Dali • Hotel Le Meurice • je ne vois pas la femme cachee dans la foret • Jean-Francois Millet • jesuit • Johannes VermeerLouvreLuis BunuelMan RayMarcel DuchampMax Ernst • Paul Eluard • piano • recluse • rhinoceros • Sacre-Coeur • Salvador Dalisurrealist artistssurrealist filmmakertelevision documentary • The Angelus (1859) • The Enigma of William Tell (1933) • The Lacemaker (1670) • Un Chien Andalou (1929)unconscious desiresVladimir Lenin


Simon Perkins

China's Factory for Fake Art Tries to Beat Slump

"In a village in southern China, Wu Ruiqiu is worried about the effect of an economic slump on the art market. He should be. Wu represents artists who make 60 percent of the world's oil paintings.

Wu is chairman of Dafen's art association, which groups 8,000 artists in a suburb of Shenzhen, China's biggest manufacturing hub. While employees in the city make cheap DVD players, computers and T–shirts, workers here produce Rembrandts, Monets and Warhols –– by the millions.

'This isn't the best of times,'' said Wu, 37, straining the Iron Buddha tea leaves from his porcelain cup. 'Dafen has to change to become more than a base for low–end fakes.''

Exports have fallen by a third this year, he said, the worst decline since the SARS epidemic in 2003 curtailed movement of people and goods in southern China. About 85 percent of sales are exports, with the U.S. the biggest customer. A decline in demand has forced the smaller of Dafen's 800 galleries to close. Others have slashed prices to compete.

If you want a real Van Gogh 'Sunflowers,'' expect to pay about $40 million, the auction record for one of the artist's signature works. In Dafen, you can get a fake for 250 yuan ($37)."
(Le–Min Lim, 24 September 2008, Bloomberg)


Shaun Belcher

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