The New York Metropolitan Museum of Art announced Feb 13 that three famous pieces of sculpture it has exhibited since 1933 are forgeries.
The New York Metropolitan Museum of Art announced Feb 13 that three famous pieces of sculpture it has exhibited since 1933 are forgeries. They are terra-cotta figures of warriors which were until now labelled 'Etruscan, of about the Fifth Century, B.C.' It is now believed they are only 50 years old.
Under suspicion for some years because of their style, recent tests by Joseph V. Noble, the Museum's operating administrator, revealed manganese dioxide in the sculpture's black glass, chemical not in use until the 19th century.
One of the sculptures, a tremendous stylish head with staring eyes and curly beard, was purchased in 1915. A thin warrior, almost six feet eight inches tall, was added the following year. The third figure-eight feet tall-was purchased in 1921. Skilfully "damaged" to simulate great age, the helmet of the larger warrior had been broken in 178 fragments.