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Widener to Host Lecture on Art Forgery with Art and Forensics Expert Jeff Taylor

art photo

Elmyr de Hory (1906-1976), Odalisque, in the style of Henri Matisse (French, 1869-1954), 1974, oil on canvas, Collection of Mark Forgy

One of the most prolific forgers of art of the twentieth century, Hungarian artist Elmyr de Hory, allegedly circulated hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of paintings into the art market, which he sold as works by Picasso, Matisse and Modigliani. On Thursday, March 17, Widener University will welcome art and forensics expert Dr. Jeffrey Taylor to discuss the psychological intrigue of master forgers like de Hory and other topics related to the corruption of art as well as the assessment of its value and authenticity.

Open to the public, Taylor’s lecture begins at 4:30 p.m. in Widener’s Kapelski Learning Center, Room 1, located at the intersection of E. 14th and Walnut streets in Chester. Prior to the lecture from 3:30-4:30 p.m. there will be behind-the-scenes tours of the Widener Art Gallery to show where and how the Deshong Collection is preserved and restored.  The Widener Art Gallery, located in University Center, currently features the Deshong Collection in exhibition. A public reception in the gallery will follow the lecture from 5:30-6:30 p.m. 

Taylor is an assistant professor of arts management at Purchase College, State University of New York, where he also operates an art forensics laboratory. He provides appraisal and art forensics services through his firm Taylor Art Services. He holds Hungarian state-recognized appraisers licenses for antique furniture and oriental carpets and is a Certified Appraiser of Impressionist and Modern Art – the highest category of expertise for an appraiser – with the Appraisers Association of America.

Taylor is currently serving as the lead researcher for a film about de Hory titled “Elmyr on the Edge,” which is scheduled for release by DiPSO Films in fall 2016. He is also working on a textbook for the art business titled “Visual Arts Management,” which will be published by Routledge in 2017, and he previously published with Helena History Press in 2014 the text “In Search of the Budapest Secession: The Artist Proletariat and Modernism’s Rise on the Hungarian Art Market, 1800-1914.”

Taylor’s lecture on March 17 is sponsored by the Widener University Art Gallery, College of Arts and Sciences, History Department and Fine Arts Department.

Widener University is a private, metropolitan university that connects curricula to social issues through civic engagement. Dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention, leadership development, and experiential learning are key components of the Widener experience. A comprehensive doctorate-granting university, Widener is comprised of eight schools and colleges that offer liberal arts and sciences, professional and pre-professional curricula leading to associate’s, baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral degrees. The university’s campuses in Chester, Exton, and Harrisburg, Pa., and Wilmington, Del. are proud to be a tobacco-free. Visit the university website,