Friday, February 3, 2017

Fakes?

After the Franz Hals, the "St. Jerome" attributed to Parmigianino has been deemed a fake by Orion Analytical, a materials analysis firm which was  acquired by Sotheby’s in 2016 (1, 2) .
I am still skeptical. I would bet that the painting is authentic. Paraphrasing G.F. Hardy,  material analysts mess ups are more common than forgers of such talent. I use the word talent on purpose. It takes more than skill to create such a convincingly early-Italian Mannerist work. Still, it being a fake is a possibility, not least because of Giuliano Ruffini is keeping his cards very close to his chest. My guess however is that there may be something problematic in the provenance of the painting, rather than in its production. I have a vague memory of seeing a possibly similar work in the studio of P. Giovanni Felice Rossi, a long time ago.

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