Forgery of Egyptian modern art is on the rise
Forgeries and fakes of Egyptian modern art are on the rise, and the lack of specific laws protecting art collectors against forgeries is making it difficult to clamp down on the issue, Gracie Brahimy writes for Artlyst. Brahimy takes a look at the personal experience of the Khedrs, the first individuals to raise legal cases against fake and forged works in Egypt to explore the rise of the phenomenon in the non-Western world. The con to which the couple fell victim was allegedly orchestrated by a “well-respected figure in the arts” who introduced the Khedrs to art collecting, only to sell them replicas of artworks, with the purchasers none the wiser. According to Brahimy, the scheme was particularly successful due to the general lack of knowledge in the country on Egyptian modernist painters.
Want to familiarize yourself with modern Egyptian art? Start with the image above from the Museum of Egyptian Modern Art, also known as the Gezira Center for Modern Art, one of Cairo’s hidden gems and home to works by world-renowned Egyptian artists including Mahmoud Saïd, Mahmoud Mokhtar, and Youssef Kamel, among others. The museum was most recently the target of an art heist, when a “movie director” stole five originals from it and replaced them with fakes under the not-so-watchful eye of museum security. The perpetrator was arrested and the originals reportedly returned. The Culture Ministry has a list of fine art museums and related facilities on its website; it’s not attractive, but many entries do seem up to date. H/t Mostafa El M.