Linked-In: America's Hottest New Gallery

linkedin logo Linked In: America's Hottest New GalleryOh, if you could only hear the sarcasm in that title. As it turns out (big shocker here folks): probably not a great idea to buy inauthenticated art on Linked-In. Abigail R. Esman at Forbes wrote a great cautionary piece about Linked-In forums and the presence of stockbrokers, real estate agents and “emerging rock stars” looking for “interested parties” to buy art worth “tens of millions of dollars.” Of course we, like Ms. Esman, are skeptical of that number.

“I have four Monets,” one such person announced, “part of a group of 20 Monet paintings” that have been “sitting in a vault” for years and belong to (of course) a friend of a friend.  They are currently being authenticated, but surely they are real: they have all kinds of labels on the back.  It may be possible to buy the entire group, though only after they are authenticated, of course. Yes, he realizes that the chances are slim that they are real, but maybe, just maybe, they are, so in that case, would someone like to buy them?

Yes because the 20 Monet paintings sitting in your closet that you just haven’t gotten around to authenticating sound really promising. As Ms. Esman points out, the first thing a forger would learn to do is make a fake label. So! Get back to fruitlessly searching for a job or hunting down lame networking opportunities on Linked-In and leave the art to the people who know what they’re doing.