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The Man Who Made Vermeers: Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han Van Meegerenby Jonathan Lopez
Synopses & Reviews
It's a story that made Dutch painter Han van Meegeren famous worldwide when it broke at the end of World War II: A lifetime of disappointment drove him to forge Vermeers, one of which he sold to Hermann Goering in mockery of the Nazis. And it's a story that's been believed ever since. Too bad it isn't true.
Jonathan Lopez has drawn on never-before-seen documents from dozens of archives to write a revelatory new biography of the worlds most famous forger. Neither unappreciated artist nor antifascist hero, Van Meegeren emerges as an ingenious, dyed-in-the-wool crook—a talented Mr. Ripley armed with a paintbrush. Lopez explores a network of illicit commerce that operated across Europe: Not only was Van Meegeren a key player in that high-stakes game in the 1920s and '30s, landing fakes with famous collectors such as Andrew Mellon, but he and his associates later cashed in on the Nazi occupation.
The Man Who Made Vermeers is a long-overdue unvarnishing of Van Meegerens legend and a deliciously detailed story of deceit in the art world.
Jonathan Lopez recasts an anti-fascist folk hero as a Talented Mr. Ripley armed with a paintbrush in a new biography of a painter who famously forged Hermann Goering's Vermeer.
About the Author
Jonathan Lopez is a painter and writer who speaks five languages and traveled to four countries to research Van Meegeren. He is serving as the technical consultant for a feature-length documentary on Van Meegeren and has written an article on Van Meegeren for De Groene Amsterdammer, Hollands oldest and most respected weekly magazine.
Table of Contents
Introduction A Liars Biography 1
Chapter One The Collaborator 11
Chapter Two Beautiful Nonsense 21
Chapter Three The Sphinx of Delft 52
Chapter Four Smoke and Mirrors 72
Chapter Five A Happy Hunting Ground 100
Chapter Six The Master Forger and the Fascist Dream 124
Chapter Seven Sieg Heil! 143
Chapter Eight Goering Gets a Vermeer 166
Chapter Nine The Endgame 186
Chapter Ten Swept Under the Rug 221
Epilogue Framing the Fake 243
Select Bibliography 295
Picture Credits 317
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