Science Express - Exposing Art Forgery - Dr Christine Prior & Denis Dutton
6 March 2008,
From ‘paintergate' to the Mona Lisa, there is a long history of art works created and falsely attributed to another artist to gain a higher sale price. What scientific advances are helping to identify fakes, and what does a gallery do if they find a fake in their collection?
Dr Christine Prior is the Team Leader for the Radiocarbon Laboratory at GNS Science. She has a PhD in archaeology, but her primary field of expertise is archaeometry, the application of laboratory analytical techniques to archaeological artefacts. She uses radiocarbon dating not only to assign dates to antiquities and art objects, but also to measure excess amounts of the C14 isotope, which can be used to detect modern forgeries.
Denis Dutton is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Canterbury, where he specialises in the philosophy of art. The Forger's Art: Forgery and the Philosophy of Art, which he edited, was published by the University of California Press in 1983 and is regarded as a principle source for the aesthetic issues raised by art forgery. He edits Philosophy and Literature, published by Johns Hopkins University Press and his website Arts & Letters Daily receives 3.7 million page views per month. Professor Dutton's next book, The Art Instinct: Beauty, Pleasure, and Human Evolution, will be published in July by Oxford University Press.
Exposing Art Forgery was recorded on Thursday 6 March 2008.
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