British Queen celebrates


Up to 40 counterfeit paintings, including alleged works by Monet and Renoir, have been identified for sale on eBay, according to research conducted by Dr. Carina Popovici, an expert

in authenticating artwork.

Utilizing advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technology, Dr. Popovici analyzed images listed on the online platform and was alarmed to find many with a "high probability" of being inauthentic. She has already flagged around 40 counterfeit paintings, emphasizing that there are likely many more yet to be discovered.

"The algorithm flagged all of them as fakes," she stated. "Upon analysis, everything we examined turned out to be fraudulent art, with a negative probability of authenticity of around 95%. I believe this is just the beginning of a much larger issue."

Among the identified fakes are a painting advertised as a Monet, titled "Forest With a Stream," listed for $599,000 (£477,000), and another purported to be a Renoir, described as a study of Claude Renoir, priced at $165,000.

eBay's policy explicitly prohibits the sale of counterfeit items, but some listings still manage to slip through. The listing for the Renoir was removed after the Guardian contacted the seller, who denied selling counterfeit art. However, the seller of the Monet painting, identified as antiquepage, based in Millersburg, Ohio, has not responded to inquiries.

Dr. Popovici has been attempting to raise awareness of the issue since December 2023, reaching out to eBay offices in the UK, Germany, and the US, but has yet to receive a satisfactory response.

eBay responded to the Guardian, emphasizing their commitment to authenticity and their efforts to combat counterfeit sales, including the use of AI technology and trained investigators. However, Dr. Popovici believes more needs to be done to address the growing problem of fake art sales online.

Her company, Art Recognition, collaborates with universities and employs AI technology to analyze artworks in detail, providing probabilities regarding their authenticity. This technology has proven effective in identifying both genuine and counterfeit works, offering a valuable tool in the fight against art fraud.

Dr. Popovici emphasized the importance of raising awareness about the prevalence of fake art online and the need for greater vigilance in authenticating artworks before purchase. Photo by Wikimedia commons.