The basic story of Yuanminyuan, and why China has a right to be militaristically defensive!

I have walked this location with my best friend from China on my first trip ever there in 1999. It was very moving, and it was profound how few Westerners were there to understand.

This is part of the truth about how the west treated China in the 19th century, and is in large part why they have slowly but surely developed a stronger and stronger military. It is also akin to why Jewish art must be returned to the ancestors of the owners after the Nazis took it in WWII. My issue is, until really the late 20th century, this was the world rule, when you concurred another country/culture, all spoils of war were taken permanently by the winning party… So, should China be required to give back all art and antiques from the Mongols, etc…? What is fair, it is a very hard questions, but it MUST go both ways, regardless of the country.

Enjoy the read, Greg C. Brown, M.S., ISA AM.

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-30810596

What ironic timing to the last article! The elephants are next to go extinct!

http://www.king5.com/news/editors-pick/6-tons-of-seized-ivory-being-crushed-in-Denver-231828871.html

They killed at least 32,000 African elephants last year, with only about 500,000 knows to exist in the wild any more. At that rate, they all may be dead in under 16 years, that means there may be no wild elephants by 2029!

We really need to put our trillions of war dollars into making the lives of people in Africa and other poaching countries acceptable, this would be easy, just with a quarter of the US military budget! And, we would still have the strongest military in the world and would still be spending more on it that the rest of the world combined! It can be done, but greed continues to kill people, animals, morals and entire societies!

This is part of the Asian arts and antiques industry and we have a responsibility in it too, including prevention!

The image below is from the King 5 News article.

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What every Asian art and antiques collector should know BEFORE buying!

What every Asian art and antiques collector should know BEFORE buying!

Hello everyone, I have been on hiatus for a while for an expedition/research trip, travel and personal reasons, you know life IS busy!  But I am back and will start to post again until the next major interruption takes my attention elsewhere.

Today I want to just let you read this article on the truth of the Asian art and antiques business and market. If you have ever bought, are thinking of buying again, or want to start buying, if you are experienced, a novice, and especially if you think you know it all, I urge you to tough out this long article and read it from start to finish. It will be well worth your time for the education you will get on the truth of this industry, especially in China. It is also a good way for me to promote my consulting services to be frank, because I can save you tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars if you just spend a bit with me consulting before you buy! I have done it before and will do it again! I could have saved one lawyer well over $300,000.00 if he would have just set his ego aside and called me before he bought! However, instead, he called me to appraise the pieces he had already bought and I had to tell him ALL of his monumental “ivory” pieces were not only fakes, but either bone (1) or resin (3)! I am here to help stop the you from getting cheated, but you must ask for the help, or I will only be around to break your hearts later, telling you that you got ripped off! If you are willing to spend thousands, let alone millions, wouldn’t it be a wise investment to hire me for a small percentage of that price to make sure? Buy the way, just in case you were wondering, this does not just happen in China, but every country in the world to one degree or another! Caveat Emptor is the key phrase in the art and antiques industry at every level from sellers, dealers, appraisers and experts!

Have a nice read: http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2013/china-art-fraud/

Sincerely, Greg C. Brown, M.S., ISA, CAGA.

President, Greg C. Brown & Associates, Inc.

Minnesota Sub-Chapter Chairman, The Explorers Club.

1-888-815-9430

Info@asianappraisals.com

Greg Brown portrait. Photo by Andrew Collings.

“Integrity has no need of rules.”
:Albert Camus

 

Fantasitc reenactment of Rembrandt painting to attract new patrons!

Fantastic! The Rijksmuseum Holland had an idea: Let’s bring the art to the people and then, hopefully, they will come to see more – at the museum. They took one Rembrandt painting from 1642 , Guards of the Night, brought to life the characters in it, placed them in a busy mall – and the rest you can see for yourself! Fantastic!

The image below of the actual painting can be found at:

http://www.michaeloart.com/10-most-famous-paintings-ever/

Enjoy, Greg C. Brown, MS, ISA, CAGA.

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Rare Lawrence of Arabia photo found and goes to auction.

Cool, Lawrence of Arabia photo found and going to auction! As a member of the historic Explorers Club, I must say, this guy is one of my Exploration heroes! The photo below is directly from this article.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/9924656/Previously-unknown-Lawrence-of-Arabia-photograph-goes-on-sale.html

Enjoy the read. Greg C. Brown, MS, ISA, CAGA.

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My real focus is the crocodile skulls, but what an interesting woman.

The link below for this article is focused on a very early (rare) woman who was a self-taught Paleontologist about 200 years ago. She had all of the advantages anyone would ever want in life, let alone buying a large estate that was near to the very fossiliferous cliffs that would capture her curiosity and made her famous in her day – that always helps a lot! However, at the same time, she was brave and self-confident enough in a time when this was not only rare but often frowned upon. We can all learn something from her bravery and willingness to live life to it’s fullest. She was clearly very passionate and skilled.

My real point of this posting though, has to do with the HUGE fossil skull in the image. This beast was about 10 meters long, and could have easily eaten a human whole in one bit! The largest crocs today are about 5-6 meters, or about 1/2 of the size of this fossil crocodile specimen!  An average modern croc skull is what you see inside of the jaw of this giant. It was HUGE! Enjoy the read. The Image below comes directly from the article, which is found at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/dinosaurs/7829705/Barbara-Hastings-the-first-lady-of-fossils.html.

Sincerely, Greg C. Brown, MS, ISA.

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Amazing donation to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts!

Here is an article by Mary Abbe from the Minneapolis Star Tribune news paper about an extremely generous donation given by Libby and Bill Clark. They have donated their $25+ Million dollar Japanese art collection to the Minneapolis Instuitute of Arts! WOW! http://www.startribune.com/entertainment/stageandarts/210139451.html

Here is a link to The Clark Center for Japanese Art & Culture as well, http://www.ccjac.org/aboutus/interview.html

Enjoy, Greg C. Brown, MS, ISA.

Susan Fox, An interesting artist who is near and dear to my heart with her work

I have just had the pleasure of finding out about and meeting an interesting American artist from Oregon, Susan Fox, who is a fellow member of the Explorers Club with me. She creates wildlife art, but more interesting she loves oil painting wildlife art in Mongolia, one of my favorite places on earth, as well as other wondrous places as Kenya, the Sea of Cortez and North America! Susan captures a part of this with her use of natural soft lighting and gentle colors. Enjoy checking out her work. The images below come directly from Susan’s web site, found at: http://foxstudio.biz.

Enjoy, Greg C. Brown, MS, ISA, CAGA, MN ’09.

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Lost Sri Lankan Buddhist antiquity used as door step! Amazing!

Great story! A 1,400 year old Sri Lankan Buddhist temple step removed from Sri Lanka in the British Colonial era, brought back to England and passed down generations, and eventually was once again used as a step, how apropos. This piece was rediscovered as the important piece that it is after being rejected by Sothebys and the UK Antiques Roadshow! It sold at Bonhams for over $840,000.00 USD, after Sothebys discounted it and the Roadshow was not interested, so, even despite their great stature, this proves that a cursory look at things is not definitive, even by the most famous and “best” groups/people in the world! The key is care and attention to detail, something the can generally not be done with a mail in inquiry to the auction houses.

Items are missed all the time this way, and then discounted and then forgotten to time once again. This kind of thing is not unusual around the world. What is unusual is for it to be identified properly for what it is by careful unbiased examination by someone who was allowed to take enough time to do so. It is not inexpensive extra work to under take, but the payoffs clearly can be incredible. Would it have been worth your investment of some thousands of dollars to make an $840,000 profit? I bet your answer is yes! This BLOWS nearly even investment cost in the world away relative to the return!

This is exactly what I do, make sure that what we have is what we have, if it is authentic or not! It is my specialty.

This article is a fun read. Enjoy. The two images below come directly from the article found on the Dailymail website, at:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2313725/1-300-year-old-Buddhist-temple-stone-used-family-doorstep-sells-500-000-auction-BBCs-Antiques-Roadshow-Sotherbys-turned-away.html

Sincerely, Greg C. Brown, MS, ISA, CAGA, MN ’09.

President, Greg C. Brown & Associates, Inc. Fine art and antique appraisals, identifications, authentications, consulting and brokering.

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If you have an interest in detecting fake art and antiques, go to Black Light World!

I am not one to promote other companies and people very often. However, I have found a company with total integrity, who only sell the real and proper black lights for working with fakes and counterfeits. Their prices are fair, they have excellent knowledge and their products are not flimsy cheap pieces, they are good quality. Please feel free to visit their site, and even let them know you found out about them here at my blog. The owner is a genuine and good person to boot: http://www.blacklightworld.com/Contact.htm.

The photo below comes from the website, http://www.lakesidepottery.com/Pages/Repairing-restoring-ceramic-porcelain-china-pottery-lessons-tutorials.html.

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