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The Man Who Made Vermeers: Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han Van Meegeren

The Man Who Made Vermeers: Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han Van Meegeren Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

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.

Review:

"In this engaging study, art historian Lopez examines — as did Edward Dolnick's Forger's Spell, published in June — the fascinating case of Han van Meegeren, a notorious Dutch art forger. Van Meegeren, who sold Hermann Goering a fake Vermeer, was convicted of collaboration; he became a folk hero for duping the Nazi leader. But according to Lopez, van Meegeren was a successful forger long before WWII, and contrary to van Meegeren's claim that he was avenging himself on the art critics who had scorned his own work, Lopez says he was motivated by financial gain and Nazi sympathies: 'What is a forger if not a closeted bermensch, an artist who secretly takes history itself for his canvas?' Lopez asks provocatively. The author gives a vivid portrait of the 1920s Hague, a stylish place of 'mischief and artifice' where van Meegeren learned his trade, and brilliantly examines the influence of Nazi Volksgeist imagery on van Meegeren's The Supper at Emmaus, part of his forged biblical Vermeer series. Lopez's writing is witty, crisp and vigorous, his research scrupulous and his pacing dynamic. 88 b&w photos. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

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's writings on art and history appear frequently in Apollo: The International Magazine of Art and Antiques, published in London. The Man Who Made Vermeers grew out of an article that originally appeared in Dutch in De Groene Amsterdammer. Lopez lives with his wife, an art historian and critic, in Manhattan

Table of Contents

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 SevenSieg 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

Acknowledgments • 249

Endnotes • 257

Select Bibliography • 295

Picture Credits • 317

Index • 323

Product Details

ISBN:
9780151013418
Subtitle:
Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han van Meegeren
Publisher:
Mariner Books
Author:
Lopez, Jonathan
Subject:
Europe - Western
Subject:
Painters
Subject:
Art forgers
Subject:
General
Subject:
Western Europe - General
Subject:
Art & Politics
Subject:
Artists, Architects, Photographers
Subject:
Criminals & Outlaws
Subject:
History : General
Subject:
ART037000
Subject:
Meegeren, Han van
Subject:
Vermeer, Johannes - Forgeries
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20090715
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
10-15 b/w photos throughout
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
9.00 x 6.13 in

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » Forgery

The Man Who Made Vermeers: Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han Van Meegeren
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 352 pages Harcourt - English 9780151013418 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In this engaging study, art historian Lopez examines — as did Edward Dolnick's Forger's Spell, published in June — the fascinating case of Han van Meegeren, a notorious Dutch art forger. Van Meegeren, who sold Hermann Goering a fake Vermeer, was convicted of collaboration; he became a folk hero for duping the Nazi leader. But according to Lopez, van Meegeren was a successful forger long before WWII, and contrary to van Meegeren's claim that he was avenging himself on the art critics who had scorned his own work, Lopez says he was motivated by financial gain and Nazi sympathies: 'What is a forger if not a closeted bermensch, an artist who secretly takes history itself for his canvas?' Lopez asks provocatively. The author gives a vivid portrait of the 1920s Hague, a stylish place of 'mischief and artifice' where van Meegeren learned his trade, and brilliantly examines the influence of Nazi Volksgeist imagery on van Meegeren's The Supper at Emmaus, part of his forged biblical Vermeer series. Lopez's writing is witty, crisp and vigorous, his research scrupulous and his pacing dynamic. 88 b&w photos. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by ,
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.
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