Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Faking It : Elmyr de Hory - The Century's Greatest Art Forger

Photo Gallery

Fernand Léger taught at the Académie la Grande Chaumière. A fine painter in his own right, he befriended de Hory, and helped him increase his painting skills.

Pablo Picasso was one of the most renowned painters of the day. De Hory had quite a bit of skill in forging Picasso paintings, and was able to get more money for the paintings that people believed were originals.

De Hory also forged and sold paintings claiming them to be by Henri Matisse. One of the forgeries was sold to Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University, known for its high standards.

Elmyr de Hory, later in life. After his prison term, he vowed to produce only original works, hoping that his new-found fame would carry over into better sales. Profits were not what he had hoped, but he kept to legitimate painting from then on.

Ibiza. Elmyr de Hory fled here to live, hoping the law would not find him. He was expelled from Ibiza, but came back later and spent the rest of his life there.

Frank Perls, standing outside Perls Gallery as it was opened in the late 1930's. He was one of the driving forces behind the investigation and eventual capture of de Hory, because he was able to recognize a forgery that Elmyr tried to sell him.

Two forgeries done by de Hory. He had particular skill in forging paintings and claiming them to be the works of the Masters.