“The Painter” Suspected in Massive New York Art Fraud Scheme

August 19, 2013 | Kyle Chayka

Seventy-three-year-old Chinese immigrant Pei-Shen Qian, was known throughout his neighborhood for making a quiet living as an artist, although he was often discouraged by things such as language barriers and in many ways felt unable to connect with his audience. However, the works entering and leaving his home studio in Queens were not the works of an older man quietly exploring art-making in his golden years, but were instead tied to what could possibly be one of the largest cases of art fraud in quite some time.

No one seemed to suspect Qian’s small home studio’s direct connection to an $80 million dollar fraud operation. Allegedly, the artist created numerous works that have been attributed to some of the world’s most sought after modern artists. According to The New York Times, at least 63 drawings and paintings were sold under the guise of being “newly discovered” works by the likes of Jackson Pollock, Barnett Newman, Robert Motherwell and Richard Diebenkorn.

A series of recent FBI indictments were issued this past week to Glafira Rosales — the dealer who had apparently sold numerous works by Pei-Shen Qian — and the artist is simply referred to as “the painter” and has been unavailable for comment, so hold your speculations. (Image: InformationFarm)