Collections: Red Faces at the Louvre

The predominant color at the Louvre this week: red. The cause: embarrassment. Since Sept. 24, some 20,000 people a week have streamed through the museum to see 102 impressive French masterpieces on cultural exchange from Russia's Hermitage and Pushkin collections. One of those people, Art Dealer Daniel Wildenstein, at 48 an eminent authority on painting, was not so impressed. In a tart letter to Le Figaro, he cited 15 paintings as "incontestably apocryphal," which is a polite way of saying fake.

"Some were not even painted during the lifetimes of the artists to whom they are attributed," wrote Wildenstein. Among others,...

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