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The fake Vermeers of Van Meegeren

from May 12 2010 until August 22 2010

Han van Meegeren (1889-1947), Supper at Emmaus, 1937, Canvas, 118 x 130,5 cm, Collection Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Han van Meegeren (1889-1947), ‘The Supper at Emmaus’ viewed by Dirk Hannema (r), then director of Museum Boymans, and Hendrik Luitwieler (l), restorer. Photo: Frequin, 1938. Han van Meegeren (1889-1947), Isaac blesses Jacob, 1941, Collection Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Loan Stichting Willem van der Vorm.

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen presents ‘Van Meegeren’s Fake Vermeers’, an exhibition of the famous forgeries of Han van Meegeren (1889-1947).

This exhibition is on view in room 7. At the information desk you can find the floor plan of the museum.

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen presents ‘Van Meegeren’s Fake Vermeers’, an exhibition of ten famous forgeries of Han van Meegeren. Most are in the style of Johannes Vermeer, but the works also include forgeries of Frans Hals, Pieter de Hooch and Gerard ter Borch. The exhibition explores Van Meegeren’s technique, his masterpieces and his downfall.

Van Meegeren’s technique remains exceptional. For his masterpiece ‘The Supper at Emmaus’, Van Meegeren used a genuine seventeenth-century canvas and historical pigments. He bound the pigments with bakelite, which hardened when heated to produce a surface very similar to that of a seventeenth-century painting. This technique, combined with Van Meegeren’s choice of subject matter and composition, was an important factor in convincing so many people of the authenticity of his works.

At the end of the Second World War a painting from the Netherlands was found in the collection of the Nazi minister, Hermann Göring. The painting was traced back to Han van Meegeren, who was immediately arrested on suspicion of collaboration. Van Meegeren admitted to having sold the work, but also claimed to have made the painting himself. He had sold Göring a forgery. Van Meegeren’s confession became worldwide news and he was hailed as a hero as ‘the man who swindled Göring’. Meanwhile the art world was thrown into disarray.

Watch the documentary about Han van Meegeren on ArtTube.

Concurrently with ‘Van Meegeren’s Fake Vermeers’ the Mauritshuis in The Hague is hosting the exhibition ‘The Young Vermeer’. The exhibition explores Vermeer’s development by focusing on three early works. Our unique association with the Mauritshuis offers discounts to visitors to both museums during the exhibition. You will get a discount of € 1,50 on production of a Boijmans admission ticket at the Mauritshuis cash desk on a normal price of € 12 and vice versa you will get a discount of € 2,50 on production of a Mauritshuis admission ticket at the Boijmans cash desk on a on normal price of € 10. Tickets are valid from 12 May to 22 August 2010. Cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers.

www.mauritshuis.nl