New Website Seeks To Stop Fraud in the Art Industry

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With bogus and forged artwork run amuck, Tag Registries (http://www.tagregistries.com), an independent title company and authentication platform for artwork, is giving the art world the assurance of “authenticity” for collectors. Authenticity of art work has become hard to track and verify in recent years as an increasing amount of fraudulent practices have saturated the art market; Frustrating buyers, sellers, Catalogue Raisonne Scholars and the like.

With bogus and forged artwork run amuck, Tag Registries (http://www.tagregistries.com), an independent title company and authentication platform for artwork, is giving the art world the assurance of “authenticity” for collectors providing a necessary service in the art registry process. Authenticity of art work has become hard to track and verify in recent years as an increasing amount of fraudulent practices have saturated the art market; Frustrating buyers, sellers, Catalogue Raisonne Scholars and the like.

Many organizations that, in the past, provided verification for different artist collections have recently closed their doors or suspended these services. The Roy Lichtenstein Foundation and the Andy Warhol Authentication Board, Keith Haring Estate and Jean Michel Basquiat Estate are just a few examples of such reputable establishments that have stopped verifying pieces of work. This is due to the sheer number of requests that they receive and also due to the negative reactions, and sometime legal action, coming from collectors that are told their pieces are “fakes” in some way.

At the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation the board had always felt an obligation to guard Lichtenstein’s legacy. But now, figuring it only a matter of time before the law of averages would throw a lawsuit their way, board members decided the benefits of authenticating did not outweigh the risks. “Why should we go stand in front of a speeding car,” said its executive director, Jack Cowart. “We decided it’s not the role of the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation to deal with the art market’s authenticity issues.”

Art sellers, especially those online, are also feeling the sting that authenticity issues have brought to the Art market. Despite there being many reputable sellers, the ability for consumers to buy works that are not genuine is at an all-time high.

An article published by the NY Times points out that, “Fakes can take many forms. Most common are unauthorized reproductions that violate an artist's copyright or trademark. Other times the reproduction has been authorized, but someone adds the artist's signature - either forged or copied - to transform a cheap poster into an expensive "signed" limited edition. Finally, there are out-and-out forgeries sold as the work of an artist.” Even the most experienced art sellers can sometimes miss or not recognize the devious practices.

Tag Registries hopes to fill the void and uncertainty currently felt in the art industry by providing the art market with (patent pending) software that provides an online authentication and title platform for collectors of Warhol, Lichtenstein, Haring, Banksy and Basquiat and other artists. This new authentication system can be licensed through the site.The TAG system relieves authenticators the burden of needing to authenticate every piece. Authentication or adjudication, is only needed when two people are claiming to own the same piece. The TAG system also protects the anonymity of owner’s at all costs, and at every step of the process.

To find out more about the TAG process, technology and more please visit: http://tagregistries.com/create-registry/

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Scott Shuster Esq.
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