Fakes, art fraud, forgery, art fraud and art forgery activities, Freemanart consultancy archive files. Dali, Picasso








Fake art

All  About Fakes Art  Fraud  &  Illicit  Art  &  Forgery   Activities.
fake art line



 Arty-Facts: The Freemanart Consultancy specialises in the identification of fraud and forgery & art authentication procedures through academic investigation, detailed archive research and forensic analysis from bases and labs strategically located in Canada, the UK and Europe.


Art Authentication: Before you begin


* Before entering into a full investigation of the legitimacy of a work of art, be it academic, forensic or as with most cases, both, it is essential to know if the project is at all viable and possibly provable. Much as you would need to know if you were taking a legal case to court.

Logically, if   it   is  not, you should not attempt it, as the risk of  failure is too high.

So we always prefer to make a preliminary and vital professional pre authentication assessment for clients first. This is based upon the images you supply, the details and the items history.

This is a logical & cost effective professional assessment and advisory for which there is a modest set fee.

Please see our FAQ's which explains the process in detail.



 Here on this page we have assembled for your information and enjoyment, a number of interesting cases and astonishing facts and figures about art fraud and forgery.











Experts say that up to 1/2 of all limited edition prints on the art market are actually fakes!


And of Joan Miró aquatints? Sotheby’s and Christies will only offer them

for sale from the 1960's and only then if there is a proper provenance.


Sotheby’s and Christies will no longer consider selling Salvador Dalí prints executed later than 1930 because there are so many fakes in circulation.




The majority of fake prints are imported from Poland and Russia and the former Czechoslovakia.



Arguably, the most faked artists in history are:


Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot
Salvador Dali
Honore Daumier
Vincent van Gogh
Kazimir Malevich
Amedeo Modigliani
Frederic Remington
Auguste Rodin
Maurice Utrillo





Arty-Fact: Freemanart see more

fake Pablo Picasso drawings, prints and oil paintings

than any other artist's artwork.

On average, about a dozen a month!





From our enquirers, enquiries and investigations:

Freemanart's top artists of type for fake paintings, drawings and prints are:

PICASSO: Pablo Ruiz Picasso

DALI: Salvador Dalí, Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech,.

CHAGALL: Marc Chagall - Mark Zaharovic Sagal

MIRO: Joan Miró i Ferrà

Van GOGH: Vincent Willem van Gogh

MATISSE: Henri Matisse

RENOIR: Pierre-Auguste Renoir

DEGAS: Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas

COROT: Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot
De la PENA: Narcisse Virgilio Díaz de la Peña

COURBET: Jean Désiré Gustave Courbet

DAUMIER: Honoré Daumier

LOWRY: Laurence Stephen Lowry

REMINGTON: Frederic Remington

POTINIKOV: Ivan Pavlovich Pokitonov

ROUSSEAU: Henri Julien Félix Rousseau

Fontana: Lucio




A good forger attempts to deceive the

naked human eye.

It's part of the challenge in the game he plays.

Deceiving science in expert hands is however, practically impossible!"





Fake art





















Our TOP 30  most  enquired  about artists:

Pablo Picasso,

Vincent van Gogh,

Salvador Dali,

Marc Chagall,

Henri Matisse,

Claude Monet,

Paul Cezanne,

Edgar Degas,

Andy Warhol,

Wassily Kandinsky,

Georgia O'Keeffe,

Joan Miro,


Pierre-Auguste Renoir,

Piet Mondrian,

Nan Goldin,

Paul Klee,


Leonardo da Vinci,


Rene Magritte,

Peter Paul Rubens,

Diego Rivera,

Edward Hopper,

Frida Kahlo,

Paul Gauguin,


Jackson Pollock,


M.C. Escher.




Jean Baptiste COROT

fake Corot




  It's said that Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, the French Impressionist painter, produced about 3,000 works of art in his life.

Granted, he was a pretty busy man.

But in the USA alone, there are estimated to be about 8,000 of his works of art !

That causes just a bit of a logistical problem as the mathematics are simple.

Of Mr. Picasso though, it's probably much, much worse !






Fake Goya Painting

Fake Goya Painting




So what's this about Jacopo Poggibonsi

"The Fake Faker"


Students of art history are to be ultimately pointed towards the standard reference tomes in relation to published information biographically on this artists. You should all clarify its completeness and establish its accuracy.

Look a little harder and deeper at the story as all the pointers are there.

All may not be quite as it seems!







Picasso fake                               

Picasso? Serigraph.                             Picasso original

Picasso fake

Small Pierrot-








 The white on green Pierrot image (above left) is a modern silk screen (a serigraph) sent to us by an American client who bought it believing it to be an original print by Picasso.  It is not the lithograph referred to as "Small Pierrot" of much later illustrated to the right and based on Picasso's gouach of 1901 (centre) It is an entirely different beast altogether, so Bloggers, get you facts right.

 It is in fact an unlicenced variant of an original work (seen above painted in gouache and executed by Picasso in 1901 but the white on green print was presented and marketed as an original Picasso work of art. Thus fraudulently.

The screen print is likely a student work based on the original work by Picasso or the print.

Picasso didn't do any silk screens or serigraphs!









FAKE Certificates of Authenticity.



   It was recently drawn to our attention that  a crooked EBAY seller had posted for sale a Picasso - Supported by this fake certificate of authenticity he created Item # 290103.        

He, a student at university in the USA, claimed that Freemanart had authenticated the fake work he was selling and included that fact in the descriptor.


He also lied that we supplied him with this fake Certificate of Authenticity as shown right.

A few problems here:

This certificate of authenticity is printed on LEGAL size. paper ie: 8.5 × 14 or 216 × 356 mm.

WE are based primarily in the UK and use the the international standard ISO 216  - A4  paper size.

Silly - Silly man!


Fake COA




PLEASE NOTE: Freemanart never issue such certificates of authenticity and do not have the right to.

If you see one it is bogus. It does not bear our Logo and most definitely is not Mr Freeman's signature.

If you do see one like it - DO NOT BUY THE ARTWORK it purports to support  and please report the seller to the police.







Arty-Fact:                             About the CERTIFICATE OF AUTHENTICITY:


  There are literally thousands of bogus & worthless Certificates of Authenticity floating about the art world accompanying works of art. So you would be very wise to ask your lawyer to investigate and define their legal standing before accepting any as being any guarantee what so ever of either legitimacy or absolute authenticity.

A FEW  IMPORTANT  POINTERS  TO  REMEMBER ABOUT COA's: Certificate of Authenticity:


 If the Certificate of Authenticity does not bear the authenticators name, address, is dated and confirms his QUALIFICATION to justify the authentication, be very wary!

If he has nothing to hide he will have no problem of clearly identifying himself !

 He will also clearly define, correctly title and specify the measurements of the piece. After all, a certificate of authenticity is a document citing a legal guarantee & need to be right..

 In the authentication of a work claiming to be by any of the worlds principal artists, a little homework will show you that only certain experts and authorities, such as appointed review boards, committees, panels of experts or members of the artists families, can guarantee and underpin  either the authenticity itself, or establish an unshakable attribution

A very thorough and convincing case must be presented to those in authority to achieve this.


The so called legal 'Certificate of Authenticity' above, supporting the absolute authenticity of a Salvador Dali limited edition print, has some huge loopholes in it that were never spotted by a purchaser who is now down by six thousand dollars.


 We have blocked out the name of the owner of the print this accompanied for confidentiality and also disguised the signature of the issuer as well as the name of the company who sold the prints.

This is because we could be sued for breach of copyright and defamation of their character if we revealed it ! 








Fake, signed celebrity photos & celebrity autographs.


 Freemanart have investigated a glut of fake autographed photos recently which unfortunately are a bad reflection on a great service as they had all been purchased through Ebay ®

 Please note that the worry here is that our clients came to us for authentication of autographs from several different locations.

 Sadly, the majority of these celebrity autographs and autographed photos were executed in Autopen, which is a  mechanical device that duplicates autographs. Though the descriptors on Ebay ® claim vehemently they are not but are completely original.

The Autopen is a machine which has been widely used by celebrities, personality and even royalty when they are far too busy to sign rafts of documents or requests for signed images.

Take the obvious examples for instance which follow:

The hundreds of thousands of requests for from fans for autographed copies of photos of the Beatles >

Consider then, the vast number of these other autographs in circulation?


Fake Lennon autograph

Auto pen signed copy of a

John Lennon Photograph.

Fake apollo 11 autographs  
Fake Ali autograph

 ^ The official NASA photo - Autopen signed image of the crew of Apollo 11. The first manned landing on the moon July 1969. Commander Neil Alden Armstrong, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins & Lunar Module Pilot 'Buzz' Aldrin. All signed their signature which were copied onto a matrix to be duplicated mechanically.




 ^ An Auto pen signed photograph of the incomparable Mohammad Ali / Cassius Clay. Who is considered to be one of the greatest heavyweight championship boxers of all time


Wherever there is celebrity status, to any degree, Autpens are used. Sports, music, film, governmental.

Presidents even.

Fake Nixon Autograph

Fake Lady Diana autograph


Even her Christmas cards were often signed using Autopen



Fake Babe Ruth autograph

^ Babe Ruth: Even signed baseballs used Autopen technology to recreate autographs. Causing us even more headaches when trying to authenticate real signed examples!

HRH Diana Princess of Wales.







Fake Michael Jordan autograph

Michael Jordan

Fake Elvis Autograph


The key feature about Autopen signed autographs, is that the pen is held vertical in the machine as it copies the autograph from the matrix. This means that unlike your own signature which is created using a pen held at an angle, there is no THICK  to  THIN variation in the line . It is all very similar therefore.







Fake Star Wars autograph

Star Wars  1977 ?



 Our investigation concerned the movie 'Star Wars', with a photo very similar indeed to the one above signed in Autopen by Harrison Ford...

but signed by all the cast - allegedly !


 Neatly bearing autographs of several of its original cast, who if you recall were; Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Sir Alec Guinness, Peter Cushing, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, David Prowse and Kenny Baker , it should be worth a lot of money if original and from around 1977?


 The autographs were nice bright and sharp, blue and black signatures which were emblazoned over the respective stars images. Far too bright!


 The celebrity photograph containing the suspicious autographs that we at Freemanart examined was identified to have been printed on Fuji, Fujicolor Crystal Archive Professional Paper, which we are told by the makers Fuji, was introduced in 2001.

The first big mistake made by the seller - a crook obviously but a very stupid crook!!




Arty-Fact:  This photo, the print itself, irrespective of the autographs it bears, can therefore only be a reprint of an original, as the film Star Wars was out before the Fuji paper was even produced.

It can be nothing else.

It is not an 'original print' from the year 1977 or even 1988 as was claimed by the Ebay seller & therefore it is in no way connected directly with the film.

The years simply don't add up. But Its gets worse!


 This seller seems magically to have been able to collect hundreds of these photographs over the years, all  written in the same colour pens and all on the same sort of modern photographic paper! He must have stood waiting in the rain for the stars for hours! 

This one case though was a particularly interesting and shows just how remiss some of the Ebay® sellers are in covering their tracks!

In fact, it's just plain stupid as they can end up inside for fraud!


Fake autograph

< Here is the 'Autopen' signed autograph of Sit Alec Guinness who magnificently played the role of Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi in the film.

It is taken in context, cut out of the Star Wars cast photograph we examined.

The Second big mistake by the crooked seller is this ;

Sir Alec Guinness died on Monday, 7th August 2000 at the age of 86 years.

That's a full year before the photographic paper his autograph is signed on was invented - ie 2001.!

BBC News. Monday, 7 August, 2000 "…….The hospital would not reveal the cause of death, but Sir Alec had been suffering from ill health for a number of years. He had chronic glaucoma and had undergone cataract surgery to restore his vision".


  So our not so ultra intelligent Ebay fraudster wants us to believe that incredibly, Sir Alec had managed to come back from the dead in 2001, a full year later, completely resurrected but this time as a partially sighted man to sign this photo just for the seller!  











Fake Picasso

PICASSO - A Question of Authenticity.  Is this a real Picasso Drawing?


The pen and ink Picasso drawing on brown paper (illustrated left) is not authentic.

It is a fake Picasso drawing.

The signature and inscription study and academic research showed us that it is not consistent with known works of Picasso.  Neither is the paper it is drawn on, which was not made until 1982.

This is a kind of a giveaway really, as Picasso died in 1973!  Even so, the buyer, our client, lost himself a cool $10,000.00 for that simple mistake!

A shame he didn't come to us sooner!







Most of the fakes we see at Freemanart, naturally do have the big names, the celebrities  of the art world attached to them and therefore give promise to big money and even BIGGER long term profits for the buyer!

Messrs: Picasso, Degas, Miro, Chagall and Dali are the most notoriously faked in the prints world and the most often presented culprits as forgeries both in type and with forged signatures, appearing far too regularly on our authentication  investigation schedule.




In the course of just one week, we identified a string of 'big name' fraudulent prints which have emerged from the USA

with clients losing over $35,000.00 on their earlier art investments!



Tip of the week on Buying Prints REPEATED.


Be really cautious, if not totally skeptical of a Certificate of Authenticity which;

a/ Don't contain addresses and the qualifications of the authenticator

b/ Are not dated

c/ And - Don't carry accurate information about the print or work you are buying.

Sometimes the title of the work may be just slightly different than its actual legitimate title in the catalogue raisonné.

If the authentication paperwork, especially for a graphic work doesn't tallywith the catalogue listing for the art work and the physical sizes of the artworkdoesn't add up either, it's rather a bit like being an 1/8th. of an inch off the edge of a cliff.

You are going to end up with a very sore backside and a damaged ego.










Fake Dali print









  It's true to say, we receive hundreds of serious enquiries each month, from people around the world who want to have their Picasso or other masterpiece authenticated.

 The majority of clients have quite viable and credible stories and truly believe that they have an original work of art. it may have been passed down through the family or purchased by themselves at auction. And they entirely believe it to be real.

Far too many of them though have straightforward 'fakes' or questionable limited edition prints bearing flowery certificates of authentication, usually bought from mobile 'presentations' or hot off the internet.

 Judging by the number of fakes we've seen, cruise ships and hotel presentations are notorious. There is a sort of unwritten viability given to the seller/s because the hotel chain or cruise line name gives us that credibility, almost a recommendation to the point of sale! This is not so.

They simply rent the space to the dealers and do not support or guarantee anything!    


Fake Dali print

^ Here's a good example.

Bought in good faith during a cruise ship

auction and re named Napoleon and the angels,

It's a common fraud.

This print should be listed and described as follows:



Instead, this is actually a REPRODUCTION of the original Napoleon print, and reproduced very slightly smaller than the original



  It is an offset photo lithograph of the original etching called Napoleon, bought hastily by our client (who though it was a bargain) from an art investment presentation on a cruise ship!

It's signed by someone who quite convincingly signed the print Dali and it comfortingly comes complete with a 'genuine certificate of authenticity'

Be VERY CAUTIOUS of these and R E A D exactly what it says and more importantly,  what it doesn't say!

This is their get out!




The Certificate of Authenticity accompanying this Dali print, is one that I which I can't show you as I would

be infringing the 'crooks' copyright (Sorry, I mean the seller -  no offence friend!)

On the COA he tells us that it is a;     'signed original print'.

Correct: That's EXACTLY what it is. But the COA neglects to tell us exactly  ' who' signed it!


This particular Dali forgery is called 'Napoleon and the Angels.'

Nicely renamed and similar sounding enough to the real one to be a believable title.

The certificate of authenticity also tells us that the work is .....

in it's in its first stage of release.

Yes it is, it  actually is the first time its been published in this form.

Why?  Because they just printed it.



Fake Dali print

"It also says that the publisher states that it's replacement value is $2,750.00.

Absolutely Correct. That's what the publisher charges next week for a new one! But that is not its true value though, the value is about fifty cents, exactly what it cost to produce the fake!  But the certificate od authenticity implies other things.

Unfortunately, we can't show you the real certificate of authenticity, as the appraiser will sue us for breach of copyright according to his disclaimer.

Moral: Buy one of these and you've just been take to the cleaners!


This particular COA was signed with a squiggle, left undated and with no company name or address on the document in case you wanted to chase them! No address on the certificate from the appraiser either,  just a Post Office Box number.
Makes you wonder why?








Conspiracy & 'Mail Fraud'

Fake Dali prints

As defined by the Credit Research Foundation is as follows:

Mail fraud: The use of the U.S. Mail to defraud companies or individuals. This has become one of the main statutes to prosecute individuals on federal fraud charges. Prosecution under the mail fraud statute must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt:

Conspiracy: An agreement by two or more persons to commit a crime, fraud, or other wrongful act.





Hilda Amiel: (C 1923) American

 Hilda Amiel, was a 70 year old grandmother from New York who was accused of masterminding the world’s largest fine art print counterfeiting operation. An operation which is conservatively estimated to have generated massive public losses at the retail level & was associated with four principal artists; Salvador Dali, Marc Chagall, Joan Miro and Pablo Picasso.

The figure was believed to be up to $1 billion dollars worldwide.

 It was claimed that she, assisted by 'others', flooded the art market with prints purportedly by or attributed to Picasso and Dali and other great modernists in the eight years before she was arrested. But as public record has it, this tuned out to be a family affair.

Before her death, she was seen to be cooperating with lawyers having been arrested after 'Operation Bogart,' lead by U.S. Postal Inspector Jack Ellis, by making a lengthy videotape confession explaining how her late husband, Leon Amiel, who had started his career as a highly respectable dealer, was extremely close to some of the world's greatest artists such as Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso.

Hilda Amiel had told defence lawyers that the younger Amiel girls that were charged along with her with mail fraud for selling the fake Salvador Dali prints etc. couldn't possibly have known that the family business was illegitimate.


 It was discovered in 1993 that Amiel had warehoused over 83,000 fake prints which themselves could have netted £325 million on the art market!. However, Hilda Amiel, died before her trial began, at the age of 71.


 Police had charged Hilda Amiel, her daughters, Kathryn and Joanne and her granddaughter, Sarina, with conspiracy and mail fraud in connection with the sale of the fake prints through their company 'Original Artworks.' This was believed to be part of Leon Amiel Publishers Inc. and Amiel Book Distribution Corp. Both were founded by Hilda Amiel's late husband, Leon Amiel, who had died in 1988. (He was also implicated in a separate illicit art affair over Dali which is covered elsewhere on the Internet.)


 The New York state jury found Kathryn Amiel guilty of some 23 counts of mail fraud, Joanne guilty of 15 counts of mail fraud and Sarina guilty of 18 counts of mail fraud

The Amiel women were sentenced on May 12, 1995 - Kathryn to six-and-a-half years, Joanne to three years and 10 months and Sarina to two years and nine months.

They began serving their federal prison terms in November 2000 after the rejection of their appeals.

Derrick Hughes; Cornwall Artist    
About Fakes II