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The results were unanimously consistent in proving that the work was a modern counterfeit.In our work, we demonstrate the power of , 40.8 cm × 51.1 cm.Here we discuss two microsamples taken from an artwork carrying the date of 1866: a canvas fiber and a paint chip (C analysis.The initial sample requirement in the method’s early days amounted to tens of grams of material.Thus the additional dating of the paint reveals the forger’s scheme where the repainting of an appropriately aged canvas was used to convey the illusion of authenticity.Art forgeries have existed since antiquity, but with the recent rapidly expanding commercialization of art, the approach to art authentication has demanded increasingly sophisticated detection schemes.The method, however, is invasive and in its early days required sampling tens of grams of material.With the advent of accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) and further development of gas ion sources (GIS), a reduction of sample size down to microgram amounts of carbon became possible, opening the possibility to date individual paint layers in artworks.
The establishment of the earliest possible date of realization of a painting, called the , is based on the comparison of materials present in an artwork with information on their earliest date of discovery or production.
It is only possible nowadays thanks to technological advances of the 21st century that have made the technique viable for application to microsamples.
The case study presented here is a known forgery created by Robert Trotter (b. By his own admission, Trotter conducted 52 sales of his fakes and forgeries from 1981 to 1988 (23).
In the lower right-hand corner, the painting is signed “Sarah Honn May 5, 1866 AD.” The blue rectangle on the left indicates the sampling location of the white paint; the one on the right indicates a close-up of the sampling location.
The blue trapezoid in dashed lines shows a previous loss in the white paint due to the nature of the artificial aging used by Trotter––the paint is literally falling off the canvas.