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Arts and Entertainment

Art museum's "Intent to Deceive" kicks off with an original fake
Canton Museum of Art examines "Fakes and Forgeries in the Art World" -- and raises some money with the auction of one of its own

Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
Doug Bort, Michelle Meier and their new "Winslow Homer."
Courtesy of Rick Senften
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In The Region:

A Cleveland couple now owns a Winslow Homer – kind of. They bought it knowing full-well that it’s just a few weeks old and a copy, not the more than century-old original that’s been hanging in the Canton Museum of Art.

WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more from the kickoff of the museums new exhibit: “Intent to Deceive.”

LISTEN: The original fake

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The auctioneer called out “sold” for $800, and with that, Doug Bort and Michelle Meier became owners of the small landscape portrait, “Girl Picking Clover.” Only it’s really a copy of “Girl Picking Clover,” done by Mark Landis, or as the museum’s Max Barton puts it,

 “One of the most prolific art forgers who never committed a crime.”

Landis is one of five 20th century art forgers profiled in the exhibit that opens to the public today.

Bort and Meier said they love art, but also made the trip from Cleveland for the glimpse of high-end crimes committed over many decades.

“You have these forgers who got away with it for years. Before anybody realized it. And the fact that they fooled so many experts, it just lends that intrigue and it’s just really interesting even to people who don’t like art.

Landis is the only one of the five forgers who never was criminally charged. That’s because he never sold a work or took a tax deduction for the copies he distributed to smaller museums for decades. Landis has bipolar disorder and has said he did it largely made people like him.

Landis’ Homer, by the way, is well – and indelibly -- marked on the back as a fake.




Listener Comments:

Funny how US customs agents have no problem buying something that is fake or a forgery.

Posted by: ME (Ohio) on November 29, 2014 1:11AM
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