Drawing 19

ERIC HEBBORN After Rembrandt

1934 LONDON – 1996 ROME


Ink on foolscap torn from artist’s sketchpad.

A simple sketch on which Hebborn uses his own signature, reflecting the tenor of the times after Hebborn’s public prosecution, claims made against him forging important drawings. He proudly admitted there are still many of his forgeries lining the walls of major institutions and collections around the world.


Signed by the artist who would not stifle his former tendency to use another artist’s handwriting atop the page.

A look at the quickly applied wash reflects Hebborn’s casual approach to the type of work he did after admitting to a number of forgeries in 1984 — and feeling as though he had done nothing wrong, he used the press generated by his confession to denigrate the art world.

In his autobiography “Drawn to Trouble” (1991), Hebborn professed his rancor for the art world, museum experts, art dealers and critics. He spoke openly about his ability to deceive supposed art experts who were themselves complicit to play along with the ruse for the sake of profit. Hebborn claimed that some of his works, which have been proven “genuine” old master drawings, were actually his forgeries.

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