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Van Meegeren

Fake or Fortune?, Series 1 Episode 3 of 4

The art world can prove a bear pit, with a myriad of tricksters at work. Experts estimate that anything between 20%-40% of works of art on the market are faked. And they can turn up in the most unexpected places.

Hanging in one of the most prestigious and respected art institutes in London is a picture Philip has heard of, which may hold the key to unlocking the story of the most audacious forger of all time. A man who dared to fake the work of Old Masters and made millions from his deception, until he was caught in 1945: Han Van Meegeren.

But a mystery remains to this day, as Van Meegeren died before a complete record of his fakes was made. How did he pull off faking Old Master paintings, duping important art galleries in to making purchases of works apparently by Vermeer, even foxing Goering in to buying one of his works during the war?

Philip and Fiona get to work on the London picture which, legend has it, hung in Van Meegeren's studio on the day he was arrested. Was it his last work? And by testing it, can we prove how he out-foxed some of the most eminent minds in the art world?

1 hour

Last on

Wed 17 Aug 2011 23:50
BBC Two Northern Ireland

The Procuress

The Procuress
Unknown artist


Role Contributor
PresenterPhilip Mould
PresenterFiona Bruce
ProducerNicky Illis
DirectorNicky Illis
Series ProducerSimon Shaw
DirectorNicola Lafferty

Meet the Fake or Fortune? team

Meet the team

Discover more about our three antique sleuths.

About the artists

Fake or Fortune: artist superpromo

Discover more about the creators behind the works featured in the series.

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