Back to the complete issue
Tuesday, 21 February 2017

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.

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

Enterprise is available without charge thanks to the generous support of HSBC Egypt (tax ID: 204-901-715), the leading corporate and retail lender in Egypt; EFG Hermes (tax ID: 200-178-385), the leading financial services corporation in frontier emerging markets; SODIC (tax ID: 212-168-002), a leading Egyptian real estate developer; SomaBay (tax ID: 204-903-300), our Red Sea holiday partner; Infinity (tax ID: 474-939-359), the ultimate way to power cities, industries, and homes directly from nature right here in Egypt; CIRA (tax ID: 200-069-608), the leading providers of K-12 and higher level education in Egypt; Orascom Construction (tax ID: 229-988-806), the leading construction and engineering company building infrastructure in Egypt and abroad; Moharram & Partners (tax ID: 616-112-459), the leading public policy and government affairs partner; Palm Hills Developments (tax ID: 432-737-014), a leading developer of commercial and residential properties; Mashreq (tax ID: 204-898-862), the MENA region’s leading homegrown personal and digital bank; Industrial Development Group (IDG) (tax ID:266-965-253), the leading builder of industrial parks in Egypt; Hassan Allam Properties (tax ID:  553-096-567), one of Egypt’s most prominent and leading builders; and Saleh, Barsoum & Abdel Aziz (tax ID: 220-002-827), the leading audit, tax and accounting firm in Egypt.