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Fine Art/Real or Fake Chagall

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Question
Hi Alan,

I'm sure I've done the unthinkable and that was to purchase a supposed Chagall original pastel off of EBay.  The painting is on a heavy textured paper and appears to be done in a chalk.  I've found a similar Chagall titled "Maternité au Centaur".  My painting only has the centaur.  Any advice you can offer will be appreciated.

Answer
Risa, Risa, Risa.  I'm worried about you!  Yes, you have done the unthinkable.  I am an expert and would not do that.  Probably more than half the Chagall watercolors and pastels out there are fakes.  If you did not get provenance [papers], cancel your card charge immediately.  If you got papers from some unknown person or gallery--not the Chagall committee--cancel your card charge immediately.  The fact that you cannot find a picture of the piece is in itself not disastrous.  However, call Sotheby's, tell them you have a "pastel" you would like to sell, provide description, size, date, where it is signed and whatever else they ask you can provide, and get an estimate of value [theirs will be kind of wholesale].  If you paid much less, you must ask yourself why someone would sell it for less than they could get at auction.  Call and cancel your card charge immediately.  If you are stuck, push Ebay for info. on seller and call an attorney and the FBI.  Good luck.  Alan.

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Alan Klevit

Expertise

I can provide sound advice on buying, collecting & understanding fine art, especially original works by 20th century masters and leading contemporary artists. I can also explain techniques used to create original works and offer tips on how to tell whether or not a piece is an original work of art.

Experience

I have been active in the art world for twenty-seven years. I owned and operated four galleries and a wholesale showroom on both coasts. We specialized in original works by 20th century masters and emerging artists. I have been an art consultant, artist's representative, lecturer, auctioneer, and curator. I had a radio show for two years, "Today's Art World with Alan Klevit" [Washington, D.C.]; hosted two television shows on the arts for six years [Los Angeles Area]; have written for numerous local papers and international art magazines; and currently write a syndicated column, "The Art Beat." I conduct art auctions for charities throughout the United States, and am a frequent speaker/auctioneer on upscale cruise ships, and at civic organizations and local television shows.







Publications
ART NEWS, ART IN AMERICA, FORECAST MAGAZINE, MALIBU MAGAZINE, PANTARBE.COM, MALIBU CHRONICLE, POTOMAC ALMANAC, GAITHERSBURG GAZETTE, ART DECOR, REGARDIES MAGAZINE.

Education/Credentials
Undergraduate and graduate degrees from Georgetown University and The American University

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