Authentication and Evaluation of Paintings


Read about the artist



The Distinguished Artists Series provides links to biographical information for deceased American painters, sculptors and photographers of note indexed in alphabetical order with references to Resource Library articles and essays, plus links to other sites.

Resource Library is a comprehensive web-based publication devoted to American representational art. It contains thousands of articles and essays. Resource Library's content time line spans the Colonial period to the present and covers significant artistic achievement in every state of the Union, while building an interconnected body of knowledge including, but not limited to, the relationships of American artists to their teachers in foreign nations and America, the history of American art centers, schools and ateliers, and the evolution of methods and styles of artistic expression.

Articles and essays in Resource Library are permanently archived in multiple ways: by date published, by author, by American Representational Art topic, through institutional source and state location of each institution. Access is immediate by using any of the three index methods. The Resource Library indexing methods allow for fast and convenient pursuit of knowledge by readers. Each American Representational Art topic index constitutes a publication in its own right as each topic index is rich in periodically published new content. In addition, search engines have indexed much text within Resource Library, which is a major benefit to persons researching information in the publication.

TFAO's Catalogue of Online Articles and Essays (published outside of Resource Library) contains hundreds of links to substantive texts.


From other online sources

The Smithsonian American Art Museum also has a database of over 1,200 artist biographies that are searchable online.

AskArt hosts blogs for tens of thousands of American artists and provides auction results and analysis. AskArt estimates that over 9,000 books, exhibition records and periodicals have been reviewed in connection with its database. The database also has information on over 1,500 museums.

Abbeville Press has online sections of American art books that it sells. Go to their web site and look in subject categories for "American Art," "Art History" and "Artist Monographs." When a book is selected go to "Sample Contents" The following books have excerpts you can read and images you can see: sells a great many of the American art books in print. Amazon has a feature that allows people on the Web to read text inside books. To use this feature, search in "books," then enter title of book. When book is selected go to "look inside" and read sample pages of the book selected, which may include color images of the front cover, front flap, table of contents, excerpt such as the introduction chapter, alphabetical index, back flap and back cover. Also, some books have a word search feature, which enables registered individuals to search inside the books and pull up individual pages containing the selected words. [Click here for more on's project and other digitizing initiatives.] The following books are examples for reference:


From books

Reference books include:

Everything written or co-authored by William H. Gerdts, one of America's foremost art historians. has an extensive list of his survey books including:
Books by other authors:
Brigham, David R, American Impressionism: Paintings of Promise, ISBN: 0764903594
Brown, Milton W. American Painting from the Armory Show to the Depression. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1955.
Falk, Peter Hastings, ed. Who Was Who in American Art. Madison, Conn.: Sound View Press, 1999.
Groce, George C., and David H. Wallace, eds. The New-York Historical Society's Dictionary of Artists in America, 1564­1860. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1957.
Havlice, Patrice Pate, ed. Index to Artistic Biography. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, 1981-.
Igoe, Lynn Moody, and James Igoe. 250 Years of Afro-American Art: An Annotated Bibliography. New York: R.R. Bowker, 1991.
Optiz, Glenn B., ed. Dictionary of American Sculptors: 18th Century to the Present. Poughkeepsie, N.Y.: Apollo Book, 1984.
Optiz, Glenn B., ed. Mantle Fielding's Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors, and Engravers. Poughkeepsie, N.Y.: Apollo Book, 1983.
Prown, Jules David. American Painting from its Beginnings to the Armory Show. New York: Rizzoli, 1987.


Also see TFAO's lists of American Art Reference Books.


Go back to steps you can take

Go back to Authentication and Evaluation of Paintings

While Traditional Fine Art Organization, Inc (TFAO) does not provide authentication services, the information in this report is provided as a public service and may be of help to readers studying approaches to authentication and evaluation of their works of art. Names and addresses of consultants or vendors.are provided only as referrals for your further consideration. TFAO is not paid by consultants or vendors for listings in this report and does not receive any referral fees from them. Please use due diligence in employing these or other consultants or vendors. TFAO takes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information herein. Information from the named consultants or vendors may be inaccurate or out of date. TFAO neither recommends or endorses referenced organizations. Although TFAO includes links to other Internet sites, it takes no responsibility for the content or information contained on those other sites, nor exerts any editorial or other control over those other sites. The names, logos, trademarks, and service marks of TFAO and its publications that appear within this web site may not be used in any advertising, publicity, promotion, or in any other manner implying TFAO endorsement, sponsorship, or affiliation with any product or service, without TFAO's prior express written permission.

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