Was reading "Antiques" a magazine in our local B'Game library, and saw this book mentioned. After reading review of said book, realized that I had read it about 18 months ago.
Perenyi has got some of the biggest ones in this country, forging and conning auction houses, not the most honest institutions around. When he played out the USA, moved to England and found even easier pickings.
Well enough said, read it yourself, if you love art you will be amazed.
What a fascinating book! The first few pages were a little slow and you wondered when the guy was going to get to the stuff you picked up the book to read, but once he did, WOW! Not only did I learn a lot about the technical side of aging paintings and how to do a "proper" forgery, I learned about some artists I had not heard of before, and certainly learned a lot about how auction houses function! I found it fascinating that the FBI apparently either could not make a case or CHOSE not to make a case against him. So now he's got his own studio in Florida-well, at least if you bought something from his studio, you'd KNOW where it came from and who actually painted it!
Details fascinating of how he faked the art. Few insights tho into him personalty.
Perenyi exhibits zero remorse and thinks awfully highly of himself, despite the fact that he never forged first-rate artists. Still, this is a very interesting tale of how a man with no formal artistic training managed to fool the big auction houses with his "English country" and "early American" paintings - the kinds of things Ralph Lauren-era decorators loved to put in their clients' homes. Sadly, these fakes are likely to muddy the waters for decades for anyone seeking genuine knowledge of the painters he mimicked.
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