A painting thought to have been painted by Dutch artist Frans Hals called “An Unknown Man” has been declared by Sotheby’s to be a forgery. The painting was sold by Sotheby for $10.8m but tests “showed the presence of modern materials used in the painting in a way that meant it could not have been painted in the 17th Century”. It has now been proven beyond doubt that the work was forged.
Sotheby confirmed it had “rescinded the sale and reimbursed the client in full” but there is no indication of who the forger could possibly be.
Another painting called ‘David Contemplating the Head of Goliath’ is however believed to have been forged by the same forger who remains at large