Sunday, November 21, 2010

Amarna fake to go on display

Manchester Evening News (Paul Britton)

An infamous forged statue of an Egyptian princess will go on display at the same museum that paid £440,000 for it.

Bolton council believed the 20-inch statue, the Amarna Princess, was more than 3,300 years old after it was authenticated by experts in Egyptology at Christie’s auction house and at the British Musuem.

It was said to be a figurine of the grandaughter of King Tutankhamun and held up as a rare example of Egyptian craftwork.

But it later emerged the piece was ‘knocked up’ in the shed of a council house in Bromley Cross, Bolton.

In a case that attracted worldwide media coverage, master forger Shaun Greenhalgh admitted it took him just three weeks to create.

The self-taught artist was revealed to have created numerous fakes, including statues said to have been made by artists Barbara Hepworth, Constantin Brancusi, Henry Moore and Man Ray.

Greenhalgh’s elderly parents, George and Olive, admitted helping to sell their son’s works.

Greenhalgh was jailed for four years and his parents received suspended prison sentences after a scam police believe netted them £850,000 over 17 years.

The Amarna Princess has been securely held by the Metropolitan Police arts and antiques unit since the court case.

But museum bosses in Bolton have revealed that the piece will go on show again in the town as part of a touring exhibition.

1 comment:

Gordon Napier said...

'Granddaughter of Tutankhamun' must be a mistake. Tut had no surviving offspring. Half-sister, surely?