Saturday, November 27, 2010

Picasso or not Picasso, that is the question?

Updated: January 2, 2011

Note: Footnotes are enclosed as [FN]




















PABLO PICASSO LITHOGRAPH?

On November 23, 2010, the Florida Times Union published the “Gift guide: Heirloom gifts are something to treasure forever” article by Charlie Patton. In part, the reporter wrote: “Those with a taste for expensive art can find an original color lithograph by Pablo Picasso offered through the website of R. Roberts Gallery for just $39,960.”[FN 1]

Unfortunately, the so-called “Picasso, Vallauris 1956 Exposition, original color lithograph" offered for sale by R. Roberts Gallery on their website, is, at best, either a misidentified original Pablo Picasso linocut or a misrepresented chromist-made and/or photomechanical reproduction/poster or a non-disclosed forgery.

So, how can this be proven one way or the other?























PABLO PICASSO LINOCUT


According to New York's Modern Museum of Art, Picasso Pablo created the original "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" as a -linocut-.

On New York's Modern Museum of Art's website, their "Vallauris- [1956], Exposition" is given the following description: "Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973), Printer: Arnéra, Vallauris, France, Vallauris, France. 1956. Linocut, 39 x 25 3/4" (99.1 x 65.4 cm). Gift of Gertrud A. Mellon. © 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, 337.1957"[FN 2]

  • (Correction mine [ ], the MOMA misidentified the date as 1952 in their listing, a somewhat common occurrence since Picasso seemed to have reversed the -6- in the linocut confusing many to misidentify it as a -2-.)

This is additionally documented by El Paso Museum of Art curator Stephen Vollmer, in Texas A & M University’s 1997 Picasso Posters: A Study in Design exhibition catalogue. In part, the curator wrote: “Picasso also developed the subject of the bullfight in seven wonderfully complex linocuts. For the 1956 Vallauris "Fiesta Taurina," Picasso created a triptych image, in which spectators on the sunny (left) and shady (right) sides of the arena frame the face of a bull, placed in a vertical band representing the bullring. As is often the case, this design was also used on one of the ceramic plates Picasso created in Vallauris.”[FN 3]

So, why, in this instance, did Pablo Picasso work in an intaglio medium of linocuts as opposed to a planographic medium of lithographs?

This is also answered by El Paso Museum of Art curator Stephen Vollmer, in Texas A & M University’s 1997 Picasso Posters: A Study in Design exhibition catalogue. In part, the curator wrote: “The linocut is a relief printing process, in which sharp tools are used to gouge or scratch lines into the surface of a piece of linoleum, which is usually glued to a block of wood. The printed image is created by the inked areas of the block that remain raised or in relief. Picasso's introduction to the linocut came about through difficulty transporting lithographic stones, proofs, and plates from the village of Vallauris, in the south of France, to his Paris print shop.”[FN 4]

In this 1997 Picasso Posters: A Study in Design exhibition checklist, the following description and dimensions are given for a Pablo Picasso: "Vallauris, Toros, 1956 Vallauris, June-July 1956 linocut on paper 39 3/8 x 25 7/8 Edition 200; signed, in red pencil"

On November 23, 2010, a telephone inquiry was made to R. Roberts Gallery, requesting information on the dimensions for their Pablo Picasso “Vallauris 1956 Exposition - original color lithograph." The next day, November 24, 2010, the R. Roberts Gallery director Bracken Sansbury emailed the following information: “The dimensions for Picasso’s Vallauris 1956 Exposition are approximately 39” x 26” unframed. Currently the piece is framed for safety in a frame that is 49” x 36.” This frame is older and would need to be replaced. If you are truly interested in this piece, the cost would be $29,980.”[FN 5]

The day before, this same Pablo Picasso "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" was listed on R. Roberts Gallery's website for $39,960.

That aside, the -39” x 26”- dimensions given by R. Robert Gallery’s director, for their so-called “original color lithograph” (mislabeled linocut?) seemed to correspond exactly to the dimensions given in the 1997 Picasso Posters: A Study in Design exhibition checklist for their Pablo Picasso: "Vallauris, Toros, 1956 Vallauris, June-July 1956 linocut on paper 39 3/8 x 25 7/8 Edition 200; signed, in red pencil"[FN 6]

Additionally, the R. Roberts Gallery's Pablo Picasso -original color lithograph- (linocut?) titled "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" seemed to correspond in part to the -49” by 24 1/2”- dimensions listed for a Pablo Picasso linocut with the same title: “Vallauris [1956] Exposition” in the New York Modern Museum of Art’s collection.
























ORIGINAL COLOR LITHOGRAPH OR LINOCUT?


Using the available photographic image of MOMA's Pablo Picasso "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" linocut, details from it will be compared side by side with details from the available photograph of Road Show Company's Pablo Picasso "Vallauris 1956 Exposition - original color lithograph" (linocut?) posted on R. Roberts Gallery's website to potentially determine differences, if any.





















The images and lettering for R. Roberts Gallery’s Picasso "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" -original color lithograph- (linocut?) are obviously different when compared to MOMA’s Picasso "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" linocut.

So, which one is authentic? Here are three simple -red flag- observations:













First, MOMA’s linocut lettering, in the title -EXPOSITION-, is sharper as opposed to Road Show Company’s -original color lithograph- (linocut?) that has more bloated-like lettering. Notice the straightness of the letter -E- in MOMA’s linocut compared to the rolling valley -E- in Road Show Company’s -original color lithograph- (linocut?), consigned to R. Roberts Gallery.













Second, in MOMA’s linocut above the -S-, the transition, from red to dark purple, is more than half way to the -i- where as the transition from red to dark blue almost begins above the -S- in Road Show Company’s -original color lithograph- (linocut?), consigned to R. Roberts Gallery.









Third and finally, in MOMA’s linocut, the lettering, for the title -EXPOSITION-, is closer to the bottom edge of the printed image as opposed to the Road Show Company’s -original color lithograph- (linocut?), consigned to R. Roberts Gallery.

In other words, one of these two (or possibly both) so-called linocuts and/or -original color lithograph- (linocut?) were not printed from the linoleum blocks created by Pablo Picasso in 1956.

Certainly to be sure a lithograph, an original planographic medium, could not have been printed from any linoleum block gouged and scratched by Pablo Picasso.

One potential argument for these differences is that one was reproduced by a chromist (someone who copies another artist work) who either by their hand and/or photomechanically separated and burned new stencils, directly from (or not) Picasso’s original linocut, resulting in one plausible explanation for the expansion of bloated lettering in the Road Show Company’s -original color lithograph- (linocut?).

Additionally, when those stencils were reassembled and printed, by the chromist and/or the printer, obvious differences resulted. Subsequently, that chromist-made reproduction may have been misrepresented, with or without intent for obvious monetary implications, as one of the 200 Pablo Picasso's "Vallauris 1956 Exposition" linocuts.

INTENTION TO DECEIVE, REPRODUCTIONS ARE FORGERIES
J. Paul Getty Museum, under their Getty Research, defines -counterfeit- as: "forgeries (derivative objects)" with a note stating: "Reproductions of whole objects when the intention is to deceive; includes sculptures cast without the artist's permission."[FN 7]

In an attempt to specifically answer some of these contentious issues of authenticity, R. Roberts Gallery’s director Bracken Sansbury was sent a November 23, 2010 email [FN 8], requesting additional documentation and/or a Certificate of Authenticity for their consigned -original color lithograph- (linocut?), attributed to Pablo Picasso and titled: "Vallarius 1956 Exposition."

EDITION NOT NUMBERED BUT ONLY 200 PRINTED
In her November 24, 2010 email response, the R. Roberts Gallery director wrote: “Please find a signed COA attached. Picasso gave his publisher authorization to print 200 lithographs. The edition was not numbered per piece, but we know there were only 200 printed. ”[FN 9]

So, despite the R. Roberts Gallery director's admission that Pablo Picasso did not number this -original color lithograph- (linocut?) edition, are we to suspend disbelief or just believe without question that only 200 were printed?
























The R.Roberts Gallery’s emailed pdf copy of AFNA Inc. a.k.a. Road Show Company’s Certificate of Authenticity for their Pablo Picasso “Vallauris-1956 Exposition” -Linocut in colors-.
2010 CERTIFICATION FOR A 1956 LINOCUT

This assertion "we know there were only 200 printed," is from same R. Roberts gallery director who misleadingly promotes, with or without intent, their so-called Pablo Picasso "Vallarius 1956 Exposition" as -original color lithograph- despite its' disclosure as a -linocut- in the Afna Inc. a.k.a. Road House Company's "Certification" in her possession.

Linocuts are an intaglio creative medium where the artist uses sharp tools to gouges and/or scratches on a linoleum block versus lithographs which are a planographic creative medium where the artist draws with grease substance/pencil on a limestone block or metal plate or using opaque materials on mylar. The resulting artist printed images usually on rag paper, whether as lithographs or linocuts, are original works of visual art by the artist.

Therefore, whether the R. Roberts Gallery director misstated or misunderstood what constitutes a linocut when she referred to it as an -original color lithograph-, original creative mediums of lithographs versus linocuts are not interchangeable, much less the same.

TWO SIGNATURE ON THIS PIECE
Additionally, in the November 24, 2010 email, the R. Roberts Gallery director wrote “There are two signatures on this piece – one from the plate that was printed and one in red crayon, hand-signed.”[FN 10]

On page 1387 of the Seventh Edition of Black's Law Dictionary, -signature- is defined as: “a person’s name or mark written by that person."[FN 11]

If an artist gouge or scratch their name into the linoleum block, unless done in reverse, their name would be printed backwards when the linoleum block is directly printed to paper. In this case, it would seem Pablo Picasso gouged or scratched in reverse his name so when printed directly to paper in reverse, it would read correctly left to right but the printed result would be his name -not- his signature. Then when he subsequently signed in red crayon each completed linocut, that would constitute "a person's name or mark written by that person."[FN 12]

In other words, a printed name versus a signature are not interchangeable, much less the same.

TWO SIGNATURES?
Unfortunately, there is a more plausible and devastating explanation for what appears to be two Pablo Picasso's signatures in R. Roberts' so-called Pablo Picasso - original color lithograph titled "Vallarius 1956 Exposition." It could be a photomechanical reproduction of something Pablo Picasso may have (or not) created and signed. So, when the image was reproduced, so was that signature reproduced and then when that reproduction is signed in red crayon by Pablo Picasso (or forged by someone else), you end up with what appears to be -two signatures-.

In other words, two signatures on an image (one reproduced and one signed) is usually a huge -red flag- for spotting potential autographed reproductions, much less forgeries.

AFNA INC.'S CERTIFICATION
Now, hold that thought and reread again this “Certification,” for this so-called Pablo Picasso linocut. At first read, all the information seem plausible except that at the bottom, it states: “Authorized by.” Immediately to the right of it is an illegible name signed with no title or references given as to who they are and what their credentials are, much less if they are independent of the Afna, Inc. company whose letterhead is printed at the top.

Additionally, it is dated April 14, 2010, some 54 years after the linocuts creation by Pablo Picasso and some 38 years after his death in 1972.

It is doubtful, the person who signed, illegibly, their name to this so-called “Certification,” for their so-called Pablo Picasso "Vallarius 1956 Exposition" linocut actually witness the printing of these so-called linocuts, much less counted the number printed some 54 years ago in 1956.

On page 295 of the Seventh Edition of Black's Law Dictionary, -conflict of interest- is defined as: "A real or seeming incompatibility between one's private interests and one's public or fiduciary duties."[FN 13]

So, is it -conflict of interest- for someone from Afna Inc. a.k.a Road Show Company to authenticate a possible Pablo Picasso linocut with a piece of paper titled "Certification," when at the same time they or their consignee R. Roberts Gallery are trying to sell it for $40,000, much less for $30,000?

Does that question answer itself?















"The Fitting", 1890-1891, CASSATT, Après, Mary. 1844-1926, Color drypoint, softground and aquatint on laid paper, with Arches watermark. Bearing the blindstamp lower right, "Bibliothèque Nationale/Claude Tchou & Sons/Replique,” From a set of ten color prints inspired by the 1890 Paris exhibition of Japanese woodblock prints. Published by the Bibliothèque Nationale, France and printed by Claude Tchou & Sons in 1991, to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of Cassatt's one-woman exhibition at the Galerie Durand-Ruel, Paris.. The current rigorously replicated edition is comprised of the ten drypoints, etchings and aquatints of Mary Cassatt, kept in the Bibliothèque National and printed at Claude Tchou & Sons on the presses of the atelier Rigal à Fontenay-aux-Roses. The printing was completed January 15, 1991. The tirage of the French edition was limited to 250. Fifty are printed on Japon paper, numbered I through L, and 200 on Arches, numbered A1 through A200. There are printed 550 other examples reserved for the English, German, Italian, and Japanese editions. These are numbered B1 through B550. All these editions are marked with the stamp of the Bibliothèque National - Claude Tchou & Sons. There are also printed other editions marked H.C., reserved for the editors and their collaborators. Bresskin 147, 14 3/4" x 10 1/8" © 2005 Road Show Company
http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/01.html
NON-DISCLOSED POSTHUMOUS FORGERY

So, if there was any doubt about of this Afna Inc. a.k.a. Road Show Company's avarice, with their consignment of this -authenticity challenged- Picasso to R. Roberts Gallery in Jacksonville, Florida, the following documentation of their reckless attribution of non-disclosed posthumous forgeries as original works of visual art ie., lithographs and etchings, should end that speculation.

On page 1276 of the Seventh Edition of Black’s Law Dictionary, -reckless- is defined as: “Reckless conduct is much more than mere negligence: it is a gross deviation from what a reasonable person would do.”[FN 14]

FORGERIES ATTRIBUTED AS CASSATT ETCHINGS
All ten editions of the 8,000 or more “drypoints, etchings and aquatints,” attributed to the American artist Mary Cassatt with “1890-1891”[FN 15] dates and listed for sale on the Road Show Company's website, are actually non-disclosed forgeries posthumously forged by 1991.

Mary Cassatt died in 1926. The dead don’t etch.

U.S. CUSTOMS
That factual perspective is confirmed in a May 2006 U.S. Customs Informed Compliance Publication. In part, it states: “original engravings, prints and lithographs - means - wholly executed by hand by the artist - excluding any mechanical or photomechanical process.”[FN 16]

In 1991, a dead Mary Cassatt (d 1926) could not have "wholly executed" anything.

The Afna Inc. a.k.a. Road Show Company operates in the United States, specifically at 4326 Micah’s Canyon, Las Vegas in the State of Nevada.

The eight of the ten so-called editions of Mary Cassatt etchings are listed with the following titles: 1. "The Fitting," 2. "In the Omnibus, 3. "The Bath,” 4. “Mother’s Kiss,” 5. “Woman Bathing,” 6. “The Lamp,” 7. “Afternoon Tea Party,” and 8. “The Coiffure.”[FN 17]

On page 661 of the Seventh Edition of Black's Law Dictionary, -forgery- is defined as: "The act of fraudulently making a false document or altering a real one to be used as if genuine."[FN 18]

What are the -red flags-, on the Road Show Company’s website, that exposes these so-called editions of etchings, attributed to the American artist Mary Cassatt, as non-disclosed posthumous forgeries?

FIRST -red flag-, the Road Show Company attributes these 8,000 or more non-disclosed posthumous forgeries as original works of visual ie., etchings to the American artist Mary Cassatt with misleading dates of “1890-1891” even though it is acknowledged in the middle of length descriptions on Road Show Company's website that the "printing was completed January 15, 1991," some 65 years after her death in 1926.

Remember, the dead don’t etch.

SECOND, -red flag-, the Road Show Company promotes these 8,000 or more non-disclosed posthumous forgeries as a: “replicated edition,” when by definition -replica- means: “an exact copy or duplicate of a work, done in the same size and in the same medium, and done by the artist who created the original.”[FN 19]

The dead don’t replicate.

THIRD, -red flag-, the Road Show Company promotes these 8,000 or more non-disclosed posthumous forgeries as the: “French edition was limited to 250. Fifty are printed on Japon paper, numbered I through L, and 200 on Arches, numbered A1 through A200. There are printed 550 other examples reserved for the English, German, Italian, and Japanese editions. These are numbered B1 through B550.”[FN 20]

U.S. COPYRIGHT LAW 101
Under U.S. Copyright Law 101. Definitions, a “work of visual art” is defined as: “a painting, drawing, print or sculpture, existing in a single copy, in a limited edition of 200 copies or fewer that are consecutively numbered by the author and bear the signature or other identifying mark of the author.”[FN 21]

Mary Cassatt (d 1926) was some 65 years dead by 1991 when these so-called -editions- were numbered.

The dead don't sign, much less number.

NOTE: Does the Road Show Company’s description, given for these so-called editions, possibly mean to give each so-called edition, beyond the so-called “French edition,” 550 each? If so that would expand the potential for French and other five country editions to 2,500 each x 10 titles totaling more than 25,000.

FOURTH, -red flag-, the Road Show Company repeatedly states, in their descriptions given for these 8,000 or more non-disclosed posthumous forgeries, that: “[Claude Tchou & Sons] also printed other editions marked H.C., reserved for the editors and their collaborators.” [Grammatical correction mine]

Hors de Commerce is defined as: "Prints not equal in quality to the edition that may have minor flaws. These usually aren't signed and are canceled in some way, such as a hole in a corner or a stamp indicating they are not for sale. These prints are used by sales people to show to potential clients."[FN 22]

Therefore, for these 8,000 or more non-disclosed posthumous (by 1991) forgeries, there can be no such editioning, no such signing, no such numbering resulting in no such canceling of any such -Hors de Commerce- because posthumously there is no such Mary Cassatt.

By 1991, Mary Cassatt (d 1926) was some 65 years dead.

So, is the Road Show Company being, at best, -reckless- when it offers for sale on their website non-disclosed posthumous forgeries as original works of visual art ie., lithographs, etchings and the like, with dates that predate the death of the artist?

Yet, in the Road Show Company’s "Testimonials" posted on their website, one of their consignee galleries; Rich Roberts, of R. Roberts Fine Art in Jacksonville, Florida, stated: “I found them to be very professional, honest and deliver on everything that they promised. I have done several shows with them and found them to be extremely knowledgeable about the business. I recommend them highly.”[FN 23]

This is the same R. Roberts Gallery that in September 2010 had a Renoir & The Master Impressionists exhibition that was, in part, if not whole from the Road Show Company and promoted on R. Roberts Gallery's website as: “The Impressionists featuring original paintings and etchings by the Masters. Including four generations of the Pissaro family, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Edward Manet and other notables.”[FN 24]














Olympia, 1867, MANET, Edouard, 1832-1883, Etching on creme Van Gelder Zonen laid, watermarked paper. Signed in the plate lower right, From the complete suite of 30 etchings, no. 22/30. Printed by A. Strölin,, Maison Dumont, Paris, 1905. From the edition of 100. Harris 52, 6 1/4" x 9 1/4"
http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/13.html
NON-DISCLOSED POSTHUMOUS FORGERY

This so-called -etching- titled “Olympia,” attributed to Edouard Manet with an “1867” date by Road Show Company on their website, was actually forged in 1905 by A. Strolin.

Edouard Manet died in 1883. The dead don’t etch.

Additionally, the written description given "Signed in the plate lower right" exposes a lack of printmaking knowledge and experience by Road Show Company because if Manet's name appears on the -lower right side- of the printed image that would mean Manet's name (to properly read left to right) was inscribed in reverse on the -lower left side- of the plate, since its' direct printing to paper would result in its' reversal.


















La Queue à la Boucherie, 1871, MANET, Edouard, 1832-1883, Etching on creme Van Gelder Zonen laid, watermarked paper., From the complete suite of 30 etchings, no. 29/30. Printed by A. Strölin,, Maison Dumont, Paris, 1905. From the edition of 100., Harris 70, 9" x 6 1/4"
http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/12.html
NON-DISCLOSED POSTHUMOUS FORGERY

This so-called “etching” titled “La Queue a la Boucherie,” attributed to Edouard Manet with an “1871” date by Road Show Company on their website, was actually forged in 1905 by A. Strolin.

Edouard Manet (d 1883) was some 22 years dead in 1905. The dead don't etch, much less edition.

Additionally, listing this non-disclosed posthumous forgery as printed on watermarked paper, is meaningless minutiae to distract the consumer from the relevant disclosure of its' posthumous forging that could assist them in giving informed consent before purchasing one.






















Tête de jeune fille, 1914”, CEZANNE, Paul, 1839-1906, Etching on Japon paper. From the deluxe edition of the catalog raisonné "Paul Cezanne" edited by Ambroise Vollard, Paris. The book was printed on Japon paper in edition of 150; 200 examples were printed on velin d'Arches; 650 printed on colored paper. This print comes from the book numbered 45 of 150, originally presented by Vollard to Carl Van Doren.. Cherpin 4; Venturi 4, 12 7/8" x 10"
http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/14.html
POSTHUMOUS FORGERY

This so-called -etching- titled “Tete de jeune fille,” attributed to Paul Cezanne with an “1914” date by Road Show Company on their website, is listed as “edited by Ambroise Vollard.

“Edited” is being used as an euphemism for forged.

Paul Cezanne (d 1906) was some 6 years dead in 1914. This was a scheme by the unscrupulous art dealer Ambroise Vollard to cash-in with the sale of posthumously forged editions falsely attributed as original works of visual art ie., etchings to a dead Paul Cezanne.

Additionally, Road Show Company's associating these non-disclosed posthumous forgeries somehow with a "catalog raisonne" in the description, is overtly misleading since they have absolutely nothing to do with Paul Cezanne's lifetime oeuvre.















Femme au cep de vigne, c.1904, RENOIR, Pierre Auguste, 1841-1919, Lithograph. Signed on the stone lower left, Second and final state. Plate 8 of "Douze Lithographies Originales de Pierre-Auguste Renoir", published by Vollard, Paris, 1919. From the edition of 1000., Stella 44, 7" x 5"
http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Pierre_Renior/01.html
1,000 LITHOGRAPHS OR 1,000 REPRODUCTIONS?

Were these "1,000 lithographs" actually created, signed, much less numbered by Pierre Auguste Renoir in 1919 or a scheme by the art dealer Ambroise Vollard to cash-in at the expense of a dying paralytic old man?

NOT ONLY AN OLD MAN BUT A HELPLESS PARALYTIC
As for Pierre Auguste Renoir's ability to create, print and sign anything, much less a 1,000 so-called lithographs in 1919 is in part answered in Paul Haesaerts’ 1947 Renoir Sculptor biography. On page 10, the author wrote: “With the exception of a very few earlier attempts, Renoir devoted himself to sculpture on the eve and at the beginning of the war of 1914-1918, in other words between his seventy-third and seventy-fifth years. At the time he was not only an old man but a helpless paralytic. He was carried from his bed (where often enough he needed a cage to keep the bedclothes from touching his aching limbs) either in a sedan chair or in a wheelchair. His body was almost mummified. Not only was he deprived of the use of his legs, but his hands were stiffened and shrived. To allow him to paint, a brush was fixed between his rigidly curled fingers; thenceforth the work was done by arm movements, not by those of the hand and fingers.”[FN 25]

As for Ambroise Vollard's credibility, in 1913, the art dealer hatched a scheme to cash-in on the popularity of the artist Pierre Auguste Renoir by hiring, “at his own expense,”[FN 26] sculptor Richard Guino to forge work and pass those forgeries off as Pierre Auguste Renoir’s sculpture.

So, when paralytic Pierre-Auguste Renoir was approached about the idea of sculpture by Ambroise Vollard, what was the artist’s response?

MY DEAR FRIEND, DON’T YOU SEE THE STATE I’M IN?
On pages 17-18 in the 1947 Renoir Sculptor biography by Paul Haesaerts, the author wrote: Ambroise Vollard “still had to persuade Renoir, whose scruples persisted, to put himself seriously to work. It was not easy. Poor Renoir, perfectly aware of his condition, could do nothing but hold out his twisted, inert hands and say: 'But my dear friend, don't you see the state I'm in?'"[FN 27]

Additionally, the so-called “Signed on the stone lower left” description given by Road Show Company exposes a lack of connoisseurship on their part because: -first- if the stone was printed directly to paper, Renoir would have signed it in reverse on the right side of the limestone block for his name Renoir to read properly left to right and appear on the lower left side of the printed image, -second- the resulting printed image would have his name not his signature and -third- you can’t have an edition unless signed and numbered by the author.

So, combining Ambroise Vollard's avarice and a paralytic Pierre Auguste Renoir, is it plausible, much less possible that Pierre Auguste Renoir participated in the 1919 printing, approval and limitation of a so-called “edition of 1,000 lithographs?”

To learn more about Ambroise Vollard’s avarice with Pierre Auguste Renoir, link to: Renoir Sculptural Forgeries in -The Late Renoir- e...

Aside R. Roberts Gallery’s partnership with the Road Show Company’s in their September 2010 Renoir & The Master Impressionists exhibition and sale promoted as “featuring original paintings and etchings by the Masters. Including four generations of the Pissaro family, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Edward Manet and other notables,”[FN 28] in their December 2010 show schedule, R. Roberts Gallery posts: “12/3 (Fri) 6-9pm Rare Editions From The Seuss Estate. Show will feature seen and never before seen works from the "Secret Art of Dr. Seuss" Archives.”[FN 29]

The ironic part of this thirteen year old posthumous scheme (since 1997) to sell non-disclosed posthumous forgeries as the -Art of Dr. Seuss-, by The Chase Group through dozens upon dozens of authorized gallery venues around the world like at R. Roberts Gallery, is Theodor Geisel a.k.a. Dr. Seuss (d 1991) has “never before seen works from the "Secret Art of Dr. Seuss" Archives” either.

Whether it is fair or not, once an artist dies, as tragic as it may be, their career is over and not just beginning.

The dead don't create art.


Racing North to Get Cool, Image Size: 22” x 34”, Limited Edition of 850 Arabic Numbers, 99 Patron's Collection, 155 Collaborator Proofs, 5 Hors d’ Commerce
A 1947 "Caldecott Honor" book, McElligot's Pool clearly stands out among Ted Geisel's artistic accomplishments and is one of just two Seuss books developed from vibrantly colored paintings. Ted's original paintings from this book remain out of the public eye and, to this are under the archival care of the Madeville Special Collections Library at the Unviersity of San Diego.
http://www.drseussart.com/details/archive/racingnorth.html

NON-DISCLOSED POSTHUMOUS FORGERY



On the Chase Group's website, it states that it: "is the exclusive publisher for Dr. Seuss Artworks and is the content provider for this website; however, prints and sculptures are only available for acquisition through your Authorized Dr. Seuss Gallery."[FN 30]

The posthumous publishing of artworks even when they are Theodor Geisel's paintings being reproduced, results, at best, in reproductions, not artworks.
Reproductions versus artwork are not interchangeable, much less the same.

The State of Illinois, where The Chase Groups is located, understands that very clearly.
ILLINOIS FINE PRINT DISCLOSURE ACT
Illinois’ Fine Print Disclosure Act 815 ILCS 345/ require -reproductions- sold for $50 or more must be disclosed in writing as “reproductions.” Failure to comply to this act may include but not limited to: refund, interest, treble damages and a up to a $1,000 fine per occurrence.[FN 31]



SEUSS, Racing North to Get Cool, 22" x 34" original lithograph, $1695
http://www.rrobertsgallery.com/title.php?ititlenum=473

NON-DISCLOSED POSTHUMOUS FORGERY

Now, whether Illinois-based The Chase Group adhere's to Illinois Fine Print Disclosure Statutes when operating in Illinois may be argumentative but as for their authorized galleries such as R. Roberts Gallery in Jacksonville, Florida, such Illinois statutes are not applicable.

As a result, the R. Roberts Gallery seems to operating with impunity with their misrepresentation and sale of non-disclosed posthumous (after 1997) forgeries as the "Art of Dr. Seuss" for $225 to $1,695 or more each, falsely promoted as original works of visual art ie., lithographs, taxidermy and the like in editions attributed to Theodor Geisel (d 1991) even though he was six of more years dead when they was forged.

On page 137 of the Seventh Edition of Black’s Law Dictionary, -bait & switch- is defined, in part, as: “Most states prohibit the bait and switch when the original product is not actually available as advertised.”[FN 32]

So, would offering for sale the "Art of Dr. Seuss" and giving the public non-disclosed posthumous forgeries qualify as a -bait and switch-?























http://www.rrobertsgallery.com/

Yet, R. Roberts Gallery, on their website, would have the public believe and act on that belief that “it’s our mission to consistently provide a level of art, artful custom framing, value, and service that exceeds customer expectations."[FN 33]

R. Roberts Gallery is using -art- is as an euphemism for -forgery-.

To learn more about these contentious issues of authentcity with the so-called Art of Dr. Seuss -fraud, click on:
Art of Dr. Seuss FRAUD
Art of Dr. Seuss Fraud COVERUP


LAW, ETHICS AND THE VISUAL ARTS
On page 816-817 of Kluwer Law International’s published 1998 Law, Ethics and the Visual Arts, Third Edition by John Henry Merryman and Albert E. Elsen wrote about “Counterfeit Art.”[FN 34]

TRUTH
Finally, under the subtitle “Truth,” the authors wrote: “The most serious harm that good counterfeits do is to confuse and misdirect the search for valid learning. The counterfeit objects falsifies history and misdirects inquiry.”[FN 35]

RESOURCE ALLOCATION
Additionally, under the subtitle “Resource Allocation,” the authors wrote: “Museum and art historical resources are always limited. What gets acquired, displayed, conserved and studied is the result of a continuous process of triage, in which some objects can be favoured only at the expenses of others. Counterfeit objects distort the process.”[FN 36]

FRAUD
Furthermore, under the subtitle “Fraud,” the authors wrote: “There remains the most obvious harm of all: counterfeit cultural objects are instruments of fraud. Most are created in order to deceive and defraud, but even “innocent” counterfeits can, and often will, be so used. The same considerations of justice and social order that make deliberate fraud of others kinds criminal apply equally to fraud through the medium of counterfeit art...”[FN 37]

CONCLUSION
Just as the R. Roberts Gallery’s September 2010 Renoir & The Master Impressionists exhibition from the State of Nevada-based Afna Inc. a.k.a Road Show Company, potentially contained for sale non-disclosed posthumous forgeries, falsely attributed to Mary Cassatt and others, the gallery’s December 2, 2010 Art of Dr. Seuss exhibition contains non-disclosed posthumous forgeries, with counterfeit "Dr. Seuss" signatures applied, misrepresented for sale as original works of visual art ie., “lithographs,” “serigraphs" and "sculptures" for $325 to $1,695 or more each.

The dead don't lithograph, serigraph or sculpt.

Therefore, in support of the R. Roberts Gallery's “mission to consistently provide a level of art, artful custom framing, value, and service that exceeds customer expectations,”[FN 38] this monograph documents the potential contentious issues of authenticity with their prior Renoir & The Master Impressionist exhibition from Nevada-based AFNA Inc. a.k.a Road Show Company and their Art of Dr. Seuss exhibition from Illinois-based The Chase Group, so that with full and honest disclosure the gallery patrons might be able to give informed consent on whether or not to attend these exhibitions, much less purchase one of thousands upon thousands of non-disclosed forgeries offered for sale.

The reputations and legacy of living and past artists, present and future museum art patrons and the art-buying public deserve the re-establishment of the obvious; that the living presence and participation of the artist to once again be required, as it always should have been, to create the piece of art attributable to the artist if indeed it is attributed to them, much less purported to have been signed by them.


FOOTNOTES:
1.http://jacksonville.com/entertainment/2010-11-23/story/gift-guide-heirloom-gifts-are-something-treasure-forever

2. http://www.moma.org/collectionbrowse_result.php?object-xl=6349

3.http://picasso.shsu.edu/index.php?view=ArchiveArticle&year=1997&page=8&id=242

4.Ibid

5. From: C. Bracken Johnson (bracken [at] rrobertsgallery [dot] com)
Sent: Tue 11/23/10 2:38 PM
To: gwarseneau [at] hotmail [dot] com
(Alteration [at] and [dot] mine)

6.http://picasso.shsu.edu/index.php?view=ArchiveArticle&year=1997&page=8&id=242

7.http://www.getty.edu/vow/AATFullDisplay?find=counterfeit&logic=AND&note=&english=N&prev_page=1&subjectid=300121305

8.From: gary arseneau (gwarseneau [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Sent: Tue 11/23/10 8:48 PM
To: bracken [at] rrobertsgallery [dot] com
(Alteration [at] and [dot] mine)

9. From: C. Bracken Johnson (bracken [at] rrobertsgallery [dot] com)
Sent: Wed 11/24/10 2:00 PM

10. Ibid

11. Copyright © 1999, By West Group, ISBN 0-314-22864-0

12. Ibid

13. Ibid

14. Ibid

15.http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/01.html

16.http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/trade/legal/informed_compliance_pubs/

17.http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/01.html

18. Copyright © 1999, By West Group, ISBN 0-314-22864-0

19. p 350, Copyright © 1991 by Bena Mayer, ISBN 0-06-461012-8 (pbk.)

20.http://www.roadshowcompany.com/artists/Impressionists/The_Impressionists.htm

21.www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap1.html#101

22.http://www.cartage.org.lb/en/themes/Reference/dictionary/artdictionary/h/HorsdeCommerce%20.html

23.http://www.roadshowcompany.com/Testimonials.htm

24.. Renoir Sculptor by Paul Haesaerts, Published 1947, Printed by V. Van Dieren & Co and J. E. Buschmann, Printed in Belgium.

25..Ibid

26. Ibid

27. Ibid

28. http://www.rrobertsgallery.com/events-calendar.php

29 Ibid

30. http://www.drseussart.com/contact.html

31.On the www.legis.state.il.us/legislation/ilcs/ch815/ch815act345.htm website, the Illinois Fine Print Disclosure Act additionally states:
(815 ILCS 345/2)
Sec. 2.
“Nothing in this Act applies to any print when offered for sale or sold at wholesale or retail unframed for $50 or less, or framed for $60 or less. (Source: P. A. 77-1398.)
(815 ILCS 345/5) Sec. 5.
“No catalogue, prospectus or circular offering fine prints for sale in this State shall be knowingly published or distributed, or both, unless it clearly and conspicuously discloses the relevant informational detail concerning each edition of such prints so offered as required by Section 7.
“If the person offering such prints by means of such publication disclaims knowledge as to any relevant detail required by Section 7, he shall so state specifically and categorically with regard to each such detail to the end that the purchaser shall be enabled to judge the degree of uniqueness or scarcity of each print contained in the edition so offered. Describing the edition as an edition of "reproductions" eliminates the need to furnish further informational details unless such edition was allegedly published in a signed, numbered, or limited edition, or any combination thereof, in which case all of the informational details are required to be furnished. (Source: P. A. 77-1398.)”

32. Copyright © 1999, By West Group, ISBN 0-314-22864-0

33. http://www.rrobertsgallery.com/about-gallery.php

34. © Kluwer Law International 1998, ISBN 90-411-0697-9

35. Ibid

36. Ibid

37. Ibid

38. http://www.rrobertsgallery.com/about-gallery.php



PRINCIPALS:
Nim Vaswani
owner
Afna Inc.
4326 [Micah’s] Canyon Court
Las Vegas, NV 89129-1608
(702) 891-9700
[correction mine]
“Afna Inc is a private company categorized under Promotion Service and located in Las Vegas, NV. Current estimates show this company has an annual revenue of $1 to 2.5 million and employs a staff of approximately 5 to 9.”
The link is: http://www.manta.com/c/mttd4s4/afna-inc

a.k.a. Road Show Company
4326 Micah's Canyon
Las Vegas, NV 89129
Tel: 702.891.9700
Fax: 702.597.0800
Cell: 305.458.3000
nim [at] roadshowcompany [dot] com
The link is: http://www.roadshowcompany.com/Contact.htm

Catherine Bracken Sansbury
Gallery Director & Art Consultant
R. Roberts Gallery
3606 St. Johns Avenue
Jacksonville, FL 32205
904-388-1188
704-579-0291(cell)
bracken [at] rrobertsgallery [dot] com
www.rrobertsgallery.com
Gallery Hours: Tues. - Sat. 11a - 6p

Bill Dreyer
Curator, Art of Dr. Seuss collection
The Chase Group

847.564.2000 x 26
bill [at] chaseart [dot] com


Ryan McLaughlin
Media Relations
Mac Strategies Group
312-588-4102
ryan [at] macstrategiesgroup [dot] com

2 Comments:

Blogger DoctorDee said...

Mr Arseneau, you repeatedly (and ad nauseum) quote that: 'Lithographs, like any original printmaking medium, are original works of visual art “wholly executed by hand by the artist” and “exclude any mechanical and photomechanical processes".' Let us ignore the essential illiteracy of your unintentional assertion that any printmaking MEDIUM is an original work of visual art, since this is clearly not true, and one must assume that you were referring to the product of any original printmaking medium.

Your thesis is based on a misquote, since the source material - a US Customs publication supporting the harmonised commodity codes system, states that "ORIGINAL engravings, prints and lithographs... means impressions produced directly, in black and white or in color, of one or of several plates wholly executed by hand by the artist".

This definition is purely for assigning the appropriate customs duty rate to a work of art and has no greater currency.

Indeed, the idea that an original sérigraph must be "wholly executed by hand by the artist" and cannot include " any mechanical and photomechanical processes" would render most of the (original) works of Andy Warhol, Gilbert and George, Damien Hirst, and many other significant artists, as fakes by your definition.

The fact is, in very many of the cases where you take issue no deception whatsoever is undertaken, since the public is fully aware that the works are reproductions. Rather than tilting at windmills, you would do your cause much more justice if you restrained yourself to only complaining where deception was actually taking place, and if you did not rely so heavily (and so repeatedly) on a citation misquoted and taken out of context.

5:21 AM, January 02, 2011  
Blogger Gary Arseneau said...

January 2, 2010

Dear Dr. Dee:

I thank you for sharing your thoughts and appreciate that you have taken the time and effort to read my monograph and respond in kind.

As an artist who has created and printed over 10,000 lithographs and serigraphs, I speak from experience and as a scholar I humbly document with authority.

I stand by my published assertions.

All the best,

Gary Arseneau
artist, creator of original lithographs & scholar
Fernandina Beach, Florida

12:31 PM, January 02, 2011  

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