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When Is an Adams Not an Adams? When the Expert Changes His Mind.

September 7, 2010

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Ansel Adams is one of the most well-known American nature photographers -- <a href=""></a> . Original works by him are thus quite valuable. It was thus quite exciting when Rick Norsigian bought a box of negatives at a California garage sale for $45 and, through the assistance of experts, was able to authenticate the negatives as original Adams’s works with a value of more than $200,000,000. Robert Moeller III was the lead expert who authenticated the find.
Now, just as the prints are about to go on sale, Moeller has changed his mind -- <a href=""></a> He no longer believes that the works are Adams, but rather are the works of Earl Brooks, an unheralded photographer. Since the $200,000,000 valuation is nowhere close to the value of Brooks’s originals – a Brooks negative might sell for $25 whereas an Adams negative might fetch $7,500 – the authenticity dispute is only likely to increase. It should make for an interesting diminution in value claim if a loss ever results!
If you have any questions about this post, please contact Bob Cosgrove at <a href=""></a>.


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