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  • gerard van weyenbergh

Credibility internet art experts, and fake art.

Updated: Jul 9, 2020

Second meeting of the “Compagnie Nationale des Experts” , which is the National Company of experts in France.

President CNE, Mr. Castaing (1) concluded that the expert today is under threat for 3 aspects The enormous amounts of money arriving on the art market, which makes it inevitable that the market is flooded with a huge amount of fakes. Experts are deciding for a great income or a great loss of money for an individual who presents an item for authenticity. Experts could be subject to life threats or more usually to lawsuits if the owner of an item is not satisfied with the outcome of an expertise. In consequence, good experts are reluctant to give their opinion and remain preferably in the background.

Internet , despite its positive effects , saw a tsunami of self proclaimed experts, who are analyzing items only on photos, which is of course absolutely contrary to a good practice of expertise of an art work. We observe a double movement, on one side we see the good experts remaining in the background and “internet” experts flooding the art business. In the same time, we see an important arrival of fake paintings invading the art market and several important legal affairs involving paintings sold by highest reputable galleries selling knowingly fake paintings.

One of the conclusions of the meeting was that it is impossible to make a serious analysis of a painting, only based on a photo.

Another conclusion concerns Drouot auction house, who will call the CNE for the vettings and for the first time of its history CNE will do the vetting of the members of the Paris Biennale. It shows that "good experts" have a major importance in the today art market.

In this video, we see Mr. Castaing speaking in court about “ fakes in art”. French language

(1) Mr. Castaing, president of this company, biography:

Professor of History at Lycée Henri-IV, he specializes in autographs and historical documents, especially in autograph signatures; he will publish a collection under the title Signatures. He is expert in manuscripts of the eighteenth century. Member of the Consultative Commission of National Treasures, he chaired from 2004 to 2009 the National Union of the Old and Modern Bookstore (SLAM), since December 2012 he is Honorary President of SLAM. Currently President of the National Company of Experts (CNE).

He is an officer of Arts and Letters.


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