Eric Hebborn, unfortunately now deceased, has nearly let us have the full picture, with his last book. Many of the secrets required to execute these works are inherant in the individual. By that I mean if you are a competent draftsperson, you are more than halfway there. The ability to draw is of vital importance and no amount of technical knowledge will compensate you for lack of Artistic skill.However, he provides us with the basics to create a 'decorative fake'. If you intend to pit your skills against an expert, then you will need a little more than he gives us.Like the equally famous Tom Keating, he quotes chunks of Max Doerner, a German Art Historian, who wrote a difinitive work in the 1930's. Little of the technical 'stuff' is his own.He keeps that well hidden, such as recipies for the ink, the size for the paper and gesso for the canvas etc. He tells us that particular colours were not available to the Old Masters and some that were are not available today, he sujjests ways in which we might avoid or disguise their lack of use. In fact these pigments are available.Today in Florence one can buy all the pigments and materials that were available to Leonardo da Vinci. That said, one still needs to know how to simulate the ageing process.Eric leaves us with little more than a vague cocktail of oil paints, resins and varnishes which are then baked for around 30 minutes to 120 minutes depending on which chapter you read! The answers are out there for the enquiring mind and this book is a vital stepping stone for the individual intent on seeking the knowledge. The alternative thrust of the book of course, as befits the man's entire persona was to thumb his nose at the Art establishment. This he does superbly well. He rightly tells us that the so called expert will not be swayed from the belief that the Old Masters were beyond being equalled. This is one of the best head starts that a Faker can have!All one has to do is develop the same or greater skill than the Artist being copied! easy huh? Obviously not but there are thousands of Artists with equal the skills of the Old Masters, and accepting this as a fact is beyond the so called expert and he is therefore there for the taking! Eric Hebborn entertains us with anecdotes of how they (EXPERTS)have been duped, and one cannot help but admire him for the obvious successes he has achieved.Having met this man in the early 80's I can vouch for his technical skill, charisma and enigmatic charm.Sadly brutally murdered, probably for his undoubted successes at the expense of Art dealers, he took most of that skill to the grave. What he did leave was the catalyst for those who would follow.Read this book, tell no-one and practice your craft! .......
Fun to read but not to be taken seriously, by that I mean your not going to become a great forger just by reading this book. However you will learn of some of the techniques used by one of the world greatest forgers.
I bought this book from an interest in the practical side of old masterly techniques, but it would be enjoyed by anyone with an interest in the art world. It is an excellent read, written with audacity and wit - I chuckled aloud many times. Included is a wealth of information on topics such as where to seek out genuinely old paper (and how to fake it if you can't!) It is also packed with amusing anecdotes and advice on how to navigate the world of dealers and auction houses.
An excellent read! All you need to know about the techniques employed, recipes, etc. What I don't understand is why the sellers are asking such an extortionate price for a book that is available elsewhere for less than £30.(and worth every penny)