A network of counterfeiters of Francis Bacon paintings dismantled by the Italian police

A network of counterfeiters of Francis Bacon paintings dismantled by the Italian police

Added Sep 13, 2021 - 2 minutes read

500 designs and collages purported by the Irish artist Francis Bacon have been seized by the Italian authorities.

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Cristiano Lovatelli Ravarino crédit @francisbaconcollection

500 designs and collages have been seized by the Italian authorities.

500 designs and collages purported by the Irish artist Francis Bacon have been seized by the Italian authorities. The cash and valuables also included €3 million cash. Five people were involved in criminal conspiracies "to authenticate and to disseminate phony pieces of art, fraud and money laundering" according to an official police statement.

A collector from Bologna is a major suspect in this case. He was previously involved in two different inquiries beginning in 2018. The first was launched by police when they found "many artworks including two draws with Francis Bacon's signature.

Five people were involved in criminal conspiracies

Five people were involved in criminal conspiracies "to authenticate and to disseminate phony pieces of art, fraud and money laundering" according to an official police statement. The declaration stated that the second investigation launched by the tax authorities was "financial irregularities using foreign currencies incompatible with its authorized revenue sources."
A selection of drawings and collages from the collection of Cristiano Lovatelli Ravarino works by Francis Bacon were shown in the Gallery of Mayfair in April 2016. It produced a lot of turmoil in the news because the Bacon estate had no authentication of the collection and the author of the new Bacon catalog raisonné rejected it as fakes.
The works were reported to have been carried out in Italy from 1977 to 1992. They are reported as being under "temporary custody," by David Edwers, brother of Bacon's longtime lover, late John Edwards, but owned by Ravarino

At the time of her Mayfair exhibition, gallery owner Alice Herrik informed  that some 600 drawings were made from 1977 till Bacon died in 1992 for Ravarino, one of the artist's lovers.

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Cristiano Lovatelli Ravarino crédit @francisbaconcollection

The Bacon's works of Ravarino was rejected

The author of Bacon's catalog reasonné, created for the estate of Francis Bacon, rejected the works of Ravarino. In 2012 Martin Harrison told a court in Cambridge that six drawings showed were "pastiches or even parodies of Bacon's actual work." In order to confuse matters, various specialists showed that the signatures could be correct, and the court could not prove that the working body is wrong.

Francis Bacon (1909-1992) is famed for his triptychos, one of which, "Lucian Freud Three Studies," sold at Christie's in New York for $142.4 million (€120 million) in 2013. Son of the horse breeders was the Irish-born artist. He was one of the 20th century's leading painters.

An obvious homosexual man was banned by his father from his conservatives home at the age of 16, during a period when homosexuality was prohibited. He then drove via Berlin and Paris before settling down in London.

Jean Dubreil Portrait By Jean Dubreil

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