Is My Painting A Fake? How To Authenticate Your Artwork - Thomas Kinkade Studios
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Thomas Kinkade Studios
Mar 26, 2023
3 min read

Is My Painting A Fake? How To Authenticate Your Artwork

How To Authenticate Your Artwork

Are you wondering if the framed oil painting in your home is real or an imitation? While art authentication can be a complicated process, you can do a few things to detect the presence of a poor copy.

  • Look For A Certificate Or Verified Provenance
  • Study The Signature
  • Touch, Sniff, & Weigh
  • Contact A Reputable Independent Appraiser

Gather & Verify Documentation

Important pieces of art by known artists will be signed, dated and often include more information on the back of the canvas. Other documentation to determine genuine art can include the original purchase receipt, newspaper articles, certificates, and letters of authenticity from appraisers or authorized art galleries.

Put The Signature Under A Magnifying Glass

A real painting will also be signed in ink or paint. Many reproductions will use a printer or autopen to apply a signature. Use a bright light and magnifier to see if the signature is raised from the canvas and has uneven edges. Perfect pen strokes and a flat surface indicate a copy.

Genuine Art Features Layers Of Paint

Oil paintings are created by layering colors on top of other colors. When studied up close, you can see and feel the texture of brush strokes, dots of color, and base tints poking through the top layer. If it is aged, you may notice cracks and flaking. Older paints come with a distinct odor that newer tints lack.

Art Experts Have The Necessary Knowledge

However when we are talking about paintings created by a high-profile artist or a legendary master, fakes will use extensive techniques to hide the forgeries. If you suspect your art has significant value, bringing it to a certified art appraiser is best. They have the experience and contacts to thoroughly study the physical canvas and its history.

How Thomas Kinkade Studios Supports Authentic Art Sales

When Thomas Kinkade Studios put up authentic Thomas Kinkade paintings for sale, we provide a certificate of authenticity (COA) at the time of sale. We also back sales of our licensed artwork at our authorized studios, retailers, and websites. We will not re-issue a certificate of authenticity if it is lost, protecting the provenance of the original COA.

If any interested party wishes to authenticate their Thomas Kinkade artwork, we recommend contacting an independent appraiser for assistance. We encourage you to report a counterfeit if you have identified a fake.

Visit A Thomas Kinkade Studios Gallery To Purchase Genuine Art

If you wish to add a genuine piece of art or sculpture by the Thomas Kinkade Studios, we encourage you to visit one of our authorized galleries or retail partners.

2 thoughts on “Is My Painting A Fake? How To Authenticate Your Artwork

  1. photo?i have a painting that the sig. is not readable. how do i confirm is …age…authentisity can i send you a photo?

    1. Hello Robert,

      It would be best to take the piece and any paperwork (Certificate of Authenticity) to a local independent art appraiser. You can do a search online for art appraisers in your area or reach out to a local art gallery and see if they have any recommendations. We do not provide authentication services here at the publisher. As the pieces age, it does sometimes become difficult to read the signature. Your certificate of authenticity should provide you with information on the piece.


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