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THE ART OF THE CON
* Publishers Weekly chose THE ART OF THE CON for their Top 10: Art, Architecture, & Photography!
* Anthony’s previous book, Stealing Rembrandts, was a Wall Street Journal True Crime Best Seller!
* Amazon picked THE ART OF THE CON as one of their Best Books for July 2015, non-fiction!
About the book: Art scams are today so numerous that the specter of a lawsuit arising from a mistaken attribution has scared a number of experts away from the business of authentication and forgery, and with good reason. Art scams are increasingly convincing and involve incredible sums of money. The cons perpetrated by unscrupulous art dealers and their accomplices are proportionately elaborate.
Anthony M. Amore's THE ART OF THE CON tells the stories of some of history's most notorious yet untold cons. They involve stolen art hidden for decades; elaborate ruses that involve the Nazis and allegedly plundered art; the theft of a conceptual prototype from a well-known artist by his assistant to be used later to create copies; the use of online and television auction sites to scam buyers out of millions; and other confidence scams incredible not only for their boldness but more so because they actually worked. Using interviews and newly released court documents, THE ART OF THE CON will also take the reader into the investigations that led to the capture of the con men, who oftentimes return back to the world of crime. For some, it's an irresistible urge because their innocent dupes all share something in common: they want to believe.
About the author: Anthony M. Amore is an expert in security matters and the co-author of Stealing Rembrandts: The Untold Stories of Notorious Art Heists (Palgrave/Macmillan, 2011), which received a great deal of critical acclaim and was a Wall Street Journal True Crime Bestseller. He is much in demand as a speaker and lecturer on the topic of art theft and security, and has appeared on numerous national and international television and radio programs. Amore is a trustee with the Association for Research into Crimes against Art. A scripted dramatic television series, INSECURITY, based Amore’s life is currently in development with CBS Productions, with the showrunner responsible for the #1 series on television, NCIS, at the helm. Before joining the Gardner Museum in 2005, Amore logged 15 years of national security, law, intelligence, and crisis management experience with two federal government agencies: the US Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Security Administration (TSA), where he helped rebuild security at Logan International Airport after the attacks of 9/11. He was also a Special Agent with the Federal Aviation Administration for whom he was the lead agent responding to the Shoe Bomb attack. Amore has earned both a Master of Public Administration and a Certificate of Mastery in National Security from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He offers his expertise on security and cultural property protection as a columnist for the Huffington Post and was also a columnist for the Boston Herald, writing on transportation security matters. http://anthonyamore.wordpress.com
Why we love THE ART OF THE CON: In THE ART OF THE CON, Anthony Amore does more than describe incidents of art fraud; in straightforward, journalistic style, he tells stories. Each perpetrator of each scam is not just a one-dimensional criminal, but a character. I found myself drawn into the lives of these people. Why would someone risk millions of dollars, jail time, and their professional reputation? Amore answers these questions. The world of high-end art dealing is an intoxicating one. It’s a high-risk, high-reward game where all types of people—immigrants, failed artists, successful artists, and gallery owners, to name a few—can play a part. Art dealing isn’t just about art. It’s about storytelling, ego, and, ultimately, the desire on the part of the consumer to believe that they possess something special. THE ART OF THE CON will sweep readers into this whirlwind world of nefarious characters and shady dealings as art experts work to authenticate suspicious pieces. Well-researched, thorough, and enjoyable, THE ART OF THE CON is a must-read for any art lover.
Art heists and Anthony Amore in the news:
The New York Times ran an article called “Isabella Stewart Gardner Heist: 25 Years of Theories,” which featured Anthony Amore, February 26, 2015. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/01/arts/design/isabella-stewart-gardner-heist-25-years-of-theories.html?_r=2
Reuters ran an article called “Quarter-century after $500 million art heist, Boston mystery endures,” which featured Anthony Amore, February 27, 2015: http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/02/27/us-usa-boston-gardner-idUSKBN0LV18Q20150227
Praise and PR for THE ART OF THE CON:
“An engrossing read about brazen, artful scams.” – Kirkus
“Amore is privy to more information on the subject of forgeries than the average art collector or dealer, and he shares a number of those stories in this engrossing account...a bracing and highly informative assessment of a very real problem, sure to resonate with art fans and curators alike.” – Publishers Weekly
“Fascinating and at times spellbinding, this book reads like a series of case studies, setting forth the crimes of many well-known and lesser-known miscreants and entities. Of significant interest to art world aficionados, brokers, collectors, dealers, lawyers, professionals, and general readers…[an] ambitious, well-presented and well-documented survey….” – Library Journal
Anthony Amore was interviewed by NPR’s Word of Mouth.
“A riveting, fast-moving account of shameless fraudsters who wreak havoc on the art world. A must read!” – Brian T. Kelly, former Assistant United States Attorney
“The Art of the Con is must reading for any true-crime fan. Brazen museum thefts get all the headlines, but Anthony M. Amore makes it clear that the real money in art crime is to be made from forgeries, fakes, online auctions, laser printers and other 21st-century technologies. And Amore's diverse, colorful crew of art-gallery grifters and scammers have been reaping the kind of ill-gotten gains that old-school criminals could only dream of. Highly recommended!” – Howie Carr, New York Times bestselling author of The Brothers Bulger and Hitman
“What is most fascinating about The Art of the Con is that you haven't heard these stories before. The tales of these unknown scams are woven into a narrative that reads like a thriller. The attention to detail takes the reader inside the investigations and allows them to play armchair detective. Read this book!” – Jon Leiberman, radio and television host and author of Whitey on the Trail: Secrets, Corruption, and the Search for Truth
“It takes a lot to pull off an art world con. But it might take even more to tell the unvarnished story behind those swindles, and there's no doubt that Anthony Amore has done it in this definitive page-turner. The Art of the Con is wonderfully investigated-and highly paced-and provides a jaw-hitting-the-floor examination of art world fraud.” – Ulrich Boser, author of the Gardner Heist: The Truth Story of the World’s Largest Unsolved Art Theft
“Not only is The Art of the Con a wild ride through a rogue's gallery of colorful art forgers, entertainingly written by a master of prose. It is that. But it's also an object lesson in how art is made, what makes art valuable, and how some of the smartest minds in the business could be suckered by deals that ultimately proved just too good to be true.” – Michael Blanding, author of The Map Thief: The Gripping Story of an Esteemed Rare-Map Dealer who Made Millions Stealing Priceless Maps
“[F]ascinating…. For anyone who has ever shook their head in utter disbelief about the ability of a con artist to dupe an intelligent person into believing—and buying—a fake work on a tall tale, Amore gives insight into how easily and frequently it can happen.” – Art Net News
Praise for the author’s previous book, Stealing Rembrandts:
“Together [Amore and Mashberg] tell a compelling story.” – The Washington Post
“Art history meets C.S.I. in this account of the theft of works by Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, the most prolific master painter of the Dutch Golden Age. Amore and Mashberg narrate heists ranging from noir to farce, weaving in details about the historical relevance of each work and background on the artist.” – Publishers Weekly
“The book alternates between Rembrandt as a prime target of thieves and a broader examination of art thefts throughout the United States and the rest of the world. Amore and Mashberg smash myth after myth.” – The Seattle Times
“[The authors] interview some of today’s highest-profile art thieves ….The most absorbing part of the entire book is the verbatim testimony from Myles J. Connor about how he cased museums, identified security weaknesses, planned his operations, implemented them, and sought to profit from the art he stole.” – The Boston Globe
“Anthony Amore and Tom Mashberg have a textured feel for Rembrandt's work.” – The Wall Street Journal
“A quick and entertaining read.” – The Christian Science Monitor
“This is a terrific book, and excellently researched.” – ARTnews
“A detailed look at numerous robberies targeting works by the great Dutch master over the past century. Combining impressive shoe-leather reporting skills with solid art-world knowledge, this fascinating book debunks many myths about museum heists while providing vivid profiles of the criminals and their motives….As Amore and Mashberg show, stealing a Rembrandt seldom pays off for the thieves but makes the world at large infinitely poorer. With hard facts and a cleareyed perspective, this book sets the record straight.” – Associated Press
“The authors smash myth after myth, many of them the result of unrealistic movies of the James Bond variety….An interesting mish-mash of everything related to the thievery of valuable art.” – Kirkus
“A fast-paced and engrossing exposé of the shady underbelly of the art world.” – Robert K. Wittman, New York Times bestselling author of Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World’s Stolen Treasures
“You don't have to appreciate art—just entertaining true-crime stories—to enjoy Stealing Rembrandts. In this fast-moving account of some of the most daring art heists ever, art security expert Anthony Amore introduces a colorful real-life cast of sticky-fingered art-lovers you won't soon forget, especially the next time you find yourself in a museum checking out an exhibit of Old Masters, or new.” – Howie Carr, bestselling author of Hitman and The Brothers Bulger
“Authors Amore & Mashberg are the Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson of the art world. True masters in their own right, they provide an unvarnished look at some of history's most notorious art heists, separating fact from popular fiction and defeating the notion that art theft is a victimless crime. On the contrary, Stealing Rembrandts is proof that plundering art for profit is more dangerous than we could ever have imagined.” – Casey Sherman, bestselling author of Search for the Strangler, Bad Blood, and The Finest Hours
“People often ask me, 'Why would anyone steal a high-profile piece of art? What could they do with it?' If you want answers read Stealing Rembrandts. This finely crafted chronicle of a century of Rembrandt thefts gives the reader rare and intimate access to the strange milieu of the art heist.” – Rebecca Dreyfus
“Stealing Rembrandts offers a rare inside look into a world few of us know beyond headlines and Hollywood. By weaving together Rembrandt’s own story with exclusive interviews and insights into the men who have stolen his masterpieces, authors Anthony M. Amore and Tom Mashberg do a masterful job of connecting the artist and his thieves across the centuries. Along the way, they explode myths and reveal the true nature of the criminals and their crimes. Most of us can’t hope to hang a Rembrandt on our walls, but the good news is that we can eagerly add this book to our collections.” – Mitchell Zuckoff, author of Lost in Shangri-La
“Stealing Rembrandts is thoroughly researched and filled with memorable characters. It is a fascinating and entertaining read.” – Milton Esterow, publisher of ARTnews
“Art history buffs and fans of the classic caper alike will enjoy this look at the great artist and those who would possess him.” – School Library Journal
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