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A Forger's Tale Hardcover – 1 Jun 2017

4.6 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Allen & Unwin; Main edition (1 Jun. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1760295272
  • ISBN-13: 978-1760295271
  • Product Dimensions: 16.7 x 3.8 x 24.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 391 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

A fascinating gilt box of secret art knowledge and expertise, told in the unpretentious voice of a legendary forger who fooled museums and collectors from his garden shed. -- Dominic Smith, author of THE LAST PAINTING OF SARA DE VOS A roundabout love letter to art. -- Ben Okri A remarkably lively account...fascinating. The Times

Book Description

The riveting account of how Britain's most prolific and versatile forger hoodwinked the art world.

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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A bit heavy on the insrruction about how he forged all his work and not enough on his career of forgery but an intesting read
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A wonderful and insightful view into the other side of 'art'. Recommended!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Rather like many of Greenhalgh's forgeries there's something about this book that's not quite right - something that unsettles you and makes you wonder whether you, the reader, are being taken for the same sort of merry dance he led, or so he says, certain elements of the art world. Quite what it is that doesn't ring true is hard to put your finger on. Is it his protestations that it was never for the money - although he was quite happy to defraud his beloved local museum of thousands of pounds they couldn't afford? Is it the peculiar juxtaposition of endlessly intriguing, complex, detail about the processes he taught himself to carry out his forgeries with banal pub talk about life and everything? Is it the way he turns down offers of legitimate jobs where he could have used his considerable skills as a ceramicist, watercolourist and metal worker in positive, creative and life-affirming ways, rather than utilising them to fool some of the more shady elements of the art and antiques world who were more than happy to use his talents for their private gain? Or perhaps it's just that we're so used to reading carefully edited books that his rambling reminiscences no longer sound like an authentic voice.
Running throughout the book alongside the anecdotes of dodgy dealers, overworked detectives, supportive, unsuspicious, parents and bemused art historians is another, largely understated, theme: the sadness that Greenhalgh never found the confidence to pursue his own art and when faced, as the majority of creative people are, with the bland indifference of the rest of the world chose, instead of battling on to discover his own visions, to step aside and hijack those of others for monetary gain.
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Format: Hardcover
This engrossing book is yet another example of how so-called art experts are shown to be anything but experts. Lovers of Antiques Shows beware. In ten chapters Greenhalgh relates how he and and his parents formed in Bolton, Lancashire, a faker's Cosa Nostra. They set up in their garage a forgery ring and fooled some of the world's most famous museums, including the British.

The author was the fake maker, his parents, pretend pensioners, were the Artful Codgers. They were the deal closers. It had all the hallmarks of an Ealing comedy. In June 2007 Shaun was sentenced to four years eight months in jail. His parents were given suspended sentences. The gang faked paintings by very famous artists and ceramics. Shaun forged a Gaugin painting that fooled everyone. He made experts look like amateurs.

This account gives you piles of information about the techniques used to make art, it also indicts professionals in many museums. At times thiese confessions are witty, charming and self- deprecating. Above all, they are instructive. Shaun made Columbian pots, Hepworths, Chinese porcelain and much more. It is not a forger's guide on how to make copies. It is bulging with knowledge and expertise. Shaun is obviously obsessed with making things. What excites him is the making. His life story is, to put it mildly, extraordinary. This working class lad educated in a comprehensive became addicted to art and with no training or help he as able to cast Venetian bronze objects and much, much more.

The real focus of this book is the ability of art to bewitch and inspire. It transformed Shaun's life. Is he a scoundrel? In some ways yes. He became a slave of art. He joined the army but art hunted him down. He was this nation's greatest forger The art world's role is very poor.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Hope Shaun is having a great profitable life...great book..
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