Imagine you’re an expert on some famous artist. Now imagine someone comes to you with a painting they believe is by that famous artist. After looking at the painting, you give your expert opinion that the work isn’t by that famous artist. Imagine that the unhappy owner is unhappy enough to sue you over your answer. In the owner’s mind, you’ve just cost him or her thousands or even millions depending on the magnitude of the painter’s fame. That scenario is happening for real more and more often. The consequences to art scholarship are chilling. Fear to use expertise is as good as no expertise at all. A world without art historians helping us understand art is one I can’t even imagine. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "How Litigation May Imprison Art History in America."
[Image source: Shutterstock.com.]