last moon

Friday, April 16, 2010

Pittsburgh beats London 1-0

It seems true that the copy of Francesco Francia's Virgin and Child with Angel, held by London's National Gallery it's only a 19th's century fake made by an anonymous while the original renaissance's masterpiece is shown at Pittsburgh's Carnegie Museum.

How many fakes are still shown in the major museums of the world?

To know more read on DM on line by Dalya Alberge

The National Gallery has discovered an impostor among its great Old Master pictures, a 19th-century forgery of a 15th-century painting.
The Virgin and Child with an Angel has been a highly-prized painting by the Renaissance artist Francesco Francia since it was acquired as a gift almost 100 years ago. It was thought to have been painted around 1490.
Now it has been unmasked as a fake, painted as recently as the second half of the 19th century. It is a dramatic occurrence for a national collection to find a forgery.
The Virgin and Child with an Angel was thought to be painted around 1490. Now it is thought to have been painted in the second half of the 19th century
Experts at the gallery found the damning evidence recently when they used routine scientific tests to look through the painting’s layers for the first time.
Scientific analysis exposed the deception, revealing that the forger used pigments that were not available before the 19th century and coated the top layer with a natural resin to simulate the appearance of age.
To their astonishment, they discovered a preliminary drawing beneath the painting drawn with a graphite pencil - an implement that did not exist at that time.
'This proved the painting could not be an authentic Francesco Francia,' says Betsy Wieseman of the gallery.

The style of the under-drawing was 19th-century rather than 16th, she adds, pointing out that the forger also simulated the natural pattern of cracks that develop in old paintings.
If not for the scientific tests, the forgery would not have been uncovered. 'It is a lovely, very attractive painting otherwise', Ms Wieseman says.
The oil-on-wood painting, which measures 58.5 by 44.5 cm, was described as a Francia when it was bought by the collector Ludwig Mond in 1893.
In 1924, his £500m-collection of Renaissance masterpieces, including Raphael, Titian and this 'Francia', was left to the nation.
The Francia Virgin took pride of place in the National Gallery until 1954 when another version, now in the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh , surfaced.

Its quality was superior, but experts still believed that the National Gallery’s painting was a Francia.
The gallery now realises that its version is a precise copy of the Pittsburgh one.
Francia was an important artist in his day, but he has since been overshadowed by his Renaissance contemporaries. The National Gallery has four other genuine works by him.
The Gallery’s Renaissance expert Luke Syson says: 'Francia is no longer prized to quite the same degree as he was in the middle of the 19th century, when this fake was made.

'Yet as an artist, Francia remains very important because he was both a painter and a goldsmith.
'Before it was discovered to be a fake, The Virgin and Child was highly prized by art historians, particularly because the chalice held by the angel appeared to provide a very rare example of Francia’s work as a goldsmith.'
Asked whether they fear they may discover more fakes, the Gallery says it is unlikely.
The fake will have one last outing in a gallery show before being disgraced to a storeroom. It will be included in the National Gallery’s major exhibition Fakes,

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