The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
 
The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Art
Van Gogh’s ear on display
Posted by The Curator on Mon Jul 07, 2014
The ZKM Media Museum in Karlsruhe, Germany has been displaying a living replica of Van Gogh's ear. It was created by artist Diemut Strebe, working together with scientists at Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital. Strebe took cells from one of Van Gogh's descendants and grew them into an ear replica, using a 3-D printer to create the shape. [wsj.com] This recalls Hugh Troy's prank from 1935 in which he molded some dried beef into the shape of an ear, mounted it in a velvet-lined box, and surreptitiously put it up on display in the Museum of Modern Art during an exhibition of Van Gogh's work, along with a sign that identified…
Categories: Art Comments (1)
My First Tattoo
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jun 04, 2014
On Tuesday, a sign went up in a shop window in the town of Whitstable alerting residents that Britain's "first tattoo parlour for kids" would soon be opening there. The website for this new business, myfirsttattoo.eu, showed a kid-friendly Hello Kitty tattoo. Surely this can't be happening in Whitstable! It's a joke right! pic.twitter.com/XKvFe36WfT— Deborah Roberts (@robertsontwit) June 3, 2014 Locals were shocked. But the sign was quickly revealed to be a hoax created by artist Sadie Hennessy who told the Daily Mail that, "I'm not doing it to make a fool out of people, I'm just trying to get people thinking about these issues about…
Categories: Art Comments (0)
Chicago Minstrel Show Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Mon Dec 23, 2013
Chicago news outlets recently received a press release from one "Harry Slater," who claimed to be an AP English teacher and "dean of dramatic and movement arts" at Community High School District 94 in West Chicago. The release said that the school's Glee Club was going to be staging a charity minstrel show in order to "start a conversation about racial representation and stereotypes." Proceeds from the show would be donated to the school's Multicultural Sensitivity Club. But when the school began receiving calls from people seeking more info about this show, it was exposed as a hoax. The true author of the release was a local artist, Jason Pallas, who had been participating…
Categories: Art Comments (0)
Bigfoot on the toilet
Posted by The Curator on Fri Dec 20, 2013
For the Bigfoot collector who already has everything... but this. Or for someone who has a Bigfoot-themed bathroom. Available on etsy. It comes as a print of an "original oil and digital painting." Though it would be better if it were a velvet painting.
Categories: Art, Cryptozoology Comments (0)
Hyperrealistic iPad portrait of Morgan Freeman
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 04, 2013
This isn't a photo. It's a painting. Or so claims UK artist Kyle Lambert who says he made it using a fingerpainting iPad app called Procreate. He's posted a video showing the creation of the painting from start to finish. Lambert based the painting on an existing photo (below) of Morgan Freeman. This has led skeptics (of which there are many) to suggest that Lambert simply traced over the photo, which doesn't take a lot of skill. But Lambert denies this. He sent an email to Gizmodo stating: at no stage was the original photograph on my iPad or…
Categories: Art Comments (2)
Kazimir Malevich Rejected
Posted by The Curator on Wed Nov 27, 2013
Someone calling himself Michael Mikrivaz (his YouTube username) made charcoal reproductions of works by the early-20th-century Russian abstract artist Kazimir Malevich (whose art now regularly sells for millions of dollars). He then took these sketches to several art academies, claiming they were his own works, and asked for an opinion on his chances of getting in. Two academies told him that, based on these works, he wouldn't get accepted. This is an example of what I call the "Spurious Submission" type of hoax. (I've been trying to think of a better term for it for a long time, but nothing has occurred to me.)
Categories: Art Comments (0)
Canine Artist Sells Work on eBay
Posted by The Curator on Tue Oct 15, 2013
Canine artist "Jack" is selling a work titled "Half-Chewed Cole Haan Wingtip" on eBay. So far bidding has reached $368, with 1 day of bidding remaining. This description is offered of the artist: Jack has been active for some time in the world of artistic defacement popularized by prominent figures such as Banksy. However, only recently have his works received critical acclaim through public notoriety and the rise of social media. He is a two-year-old Dalmatian mix who started his life on the streets of rural Virginia before being detained by a county animal control facility and then adopted by his current owner, whose many possessions have become…
Categories: Art Comments (0)
Another million-dollar art fraud
Posted by The Curator on Mon Aug 19, 2013
Never fails to amaze that there are super-rich people out there willing to shell out millions of dollars for "newly discovered" works by famous artists, even when the providence is so shaky. In this case, they were told the paintings came from an anonymous private collector referred to as "Secret Santa" or "Mr. X." Of course, now the artwork of Pei-Shen Qian, who's alleged to be the actual painter, should go up dramatically in value. Struggling Immigrant Artist Tied to $80 Million New York Fraud nytimes.com Over a period of 15 years, court papers claim, the painter, working out of his home studio and garage, churned out at…
Categories: Art Comments (1)
Fake Crystal Skulls
Posted by The Curator on Fri Mar 08, 2013
The latest issue of Chemical & Engineering News has an article that reviews the history of how the crystal "Aztec" skulls that began showing up in the mid-19th century were eventually found to be fake. The take home is that the following pieces of evidence led researchers to conclude the skulls were modern forgeries: The skulls didn't come from documented archaeological sites. The skulls' teeth were suspiciously linear and perfect, whereas the teeth in other Aztec art reflected the lack of Aztec dentistry. Microscopic analysis revealed that the crystal skulls had regular etch marks, such as would be made by modern rotary wheels and hard abrasives, not ancient hand-held tools. Spectroscopic analysis showed that the rock crystal…
Categories: Art, History Comments (1)
Miniature Amityville Horror house
Posted by The Curator on Wed Mar 06, 2013
Artist Tracey Snelling has created an installation which she calls Last House on the Left. It consists of 4 miniature houses from horror films (The Birds, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street, and the Amityville Horror. It's the Amityville Horror Dutch Colonial that caught my eye. If I ever did have a brick-and-mortar hoax museum, it would make a great addition! Snelling's miniature houses feature sound effects as well as tiny LCDs that play clips from the films when you look through the windows. The installation is currently on exhibit at the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art. The Stark Insider blog has posted a video of the…
Categories: Art, Paranormal Comments (0)
Banksy Arrest Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Sat Feb 23, 2013
A press release posted yesterday on PRLog.com announced that not only had Banksy been arrested (on charges of vandalism, conspiracy, racketeering and counterfeiting), but that his identity had been revealed—his real name supposedly being "Paul William Horner." The press release was a hoax, but a number of media outlets ran with the story before cottoning on to the deception. A humor site, IYWIB.com, appears to be behind the hoax. How a Fake Press Release Convinced the Internet Banksy Had Been Arrested betabeat.com The release stated that Banksy is a 39-year-old Bristol man named Paul William Horner, and he’d been arrested during a police sting. But the document is riddled with inconsistencies,…
Categories: Art, Journalism Comments (3)
The Fake Beggar of Gothenburg
Posted by The Curator on Wed Feb 20, 2013
Over in Gothenburg, Sweden, locals were puzzled by a homeless person begging for money at the train station, who, upon closer inspection, turned out to be a doll. Police thought it might be some kind of fraud (i.e. a homeless people using a mannequin to beg for him). But it turned out to be the work of a 13-year-old kid, Adam, who created it as "something fun" for a school art project. Brings to mind Alan Abel's Omar the Beggar hoax. The english-language article didn't have a picture of Adam and his "fake beggar," but I found one at a swedish-language site. Gothenburg teen behind 'homeless…
Categories: Art, Identity/Imposters Comments (0)
Are the Bush bathroom paintings a hoax?
Posted by The Curator on Thu Feb 14, 2013
A week ago, news broke that a hacker (calling himself 'Guccifer') had broken into George W. Bush's email account. The hacker sent some of the emails and photos he found there to the Smoking Gun, which promptly published them. Three of the leaked photos showed works of art, apparently by Bush. Two of the works were self-portraits in the bathroom — Bush taking a shower and a bath. The third showed Bush working on a more traditional scene of a seaside chapel. It's the bathroom self-portraits that attracted all the attention. Understandably, since they were so odd. Art…
Categories: Art, Politics Comments (0)
A Case of Art Plagiarism
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jan 29, 2013
Art fraud typically involves the copying or imitation of famous artists. For instance, Han van Meegeren made millions by claiming that his paintings were actually newly discovered works by Vermeer. But the recent case of Rashidi Barrett shows that it's also possible to make money by copying the work of relatively obscure artists. Rashidi Barrett (image posted on his website) Barrett's work generated positive buzz when he began showing it in Norfolk, Virginia around 2011. He used his job DJ-ing to promote his work — he called himself DJ Cornbread — and soon he was having exhibits at local galleries where he managed to sell some pieces, earning himself a few thousand…
Categories: Art Comments (2)
An Exhibition of Invisible Art
Posted by The Curator on Wed May 23, 2012
London's Hayward Gallery will soon be hosting an exhibition of invisible art. It's the kind of art where you basically have to take the artist's word for it that there's something there. Included will be works such as Warhol's Invisible Sculpture, "which consists of an empty plinth, on which he had once briefly stepped." Also, 1000 Hours of Staring, which is "a blank piece of paper at which artist Tom Friedman has stared repeatedly over the space of five years." I wonder how copyright pertains to invisible art. Can you sue someone for copying your blank canvas? Link: telegraph.co.uk. Below are some examples of invisible art.…
Categories: Art Comments (4)
Page 1 of 9 pages  1 2 3 >  Last ›
All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.