Forged: Why Fakes Are The Great Art Of Our Age
According to Vasari, the young Michelangelo often borrowed drawings of past masters, which he copied, returning his imitations to the owners and keeping originals. Half a millennium later, Andy Warhol made a game of "forging" the Mona Lisa, questioning the entire concept of originality.Forged explores art forgery from ancient times to the present. In chapters combining lively biography with insightful art criticism, Jonathon Keats profiles individual art forgers and connects their stories to broader themes about the role of forgeries in society. From the Renaissance master Andreadel Sarto who faked a Raphael masterpiece at the request of his Medici patrons, to the Vermeer counterfeiter Han van Meegeren who duped the avaricious Hermann Goring, to the frustrated British artist Eric Hebborn, who began forging to expose the ignorance of experts, art forgers have challenged"legitimate" art in their own time, breaching accepted practices and upsetting the status quo. They have also provocatively confronted many of the present-day cultural anxieties that are major themes in the arts. Keats uncovers what forgeries - and our reactions to them - reveal about changing conceptions of creativity, identity, authorship, integrity, authenticity, success, and how we assign value to works of art. The book concludes by looking at how artists today have appropriated many aspects of forgerythrough such practices as street-art stenciling and share-and-share-alike licensing, and how these open-source "copyleft" strategies have the potential to make legitimate art meaningful again. Forgery has been much discussed - and decried - as a crime. Forged is the first book to assess great forgeries as high art in their own right.
Oxford University Press, USA 20130103
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Did you know that the root of the word artifice is art? Does that mean that all art is artificial? Perhaps the great 20th century surrealist Rene Magritte illustrated it best with his painting, “Ceci n’est pas une pipe,” which translates as “This is not a pipe.” In one simple statement, he shows that both images and words are mere symbols for something we understand to be real. However, i… (more)