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RESEARCH TEAM

Art Fraud Insights, LLC works with a global team of researchers with members based in Australia, Boston, London, New York City, and Washington, D.C., who bring years of expertise on the art marketplace and forgery research to our education and art fraud initiatives.

Felicity Strong

Felicity Strong is a PhD candidate from the University of Melbourne’s Center for Cultural Materials Conservation, Australia. She holds a BA in Art History and a Masters in Art Curatorship. Her extensive research into the proliferation of forgeries in the legitimate art market is being applied toward her thesis entitled: [Re]framing the crime: the case for the collection and exhibition of art forgery. She also holds a Post Graduate Certificate in Art Authentication, completing modules in art historical research, provenance validation and forensic materials analysis. Felicity was recently selected as a candidate for the prestigious Art Forgery Summer School at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, and is a 2015 and 2016 Art Fraud Insights, LLC Scholarship Recipient.

Max Lester

Max Lester graduated from New York University in 2014 with a double major in Global Liberal Studies and Spanish/Latin American Studies. Prior to his tenure at NYU, Max attended the Lycée Français de San Francisco, becoming fluent in both French and Spanish. Max has worked at Christie’s Art Auction house in San Francisco, Madrid and New York in both the Contemporary and Antiquities departments. Max’s undergraduate thesis investigated the Classical and Romantic philosophical theories of the sublime in the works of Longinus, Hegel, Burke, and Kant as well as works of archaeologists and anthropologists, exploring what defines the sublime, from mathematical perfection to the ineffable chaos of nature. After graduation, he spent a year immersed in the world of law as a litigation paralegal at Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP in New York. Max is currently living in London pursuing concurrent Master of Arts and Master of Sciences in Art Conservation degrees at the University College London.

Jennifer Minich

A Washington, DC native, Jennifer Minich obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Vocal Performance and Art & Archeology from Hood College in 2010 and an Master’s of Science in Museum Studies (History of Collecting and Collections) from the University of Glasgow in 2013. Her Master’s dissertation, “So What Do You Want To Do With a Forgery?”, analyzed the curatorial perceptions of art forgeries, the history of art forgery exhibits and how the growing public and media fascination with forgeries has led to a revitalized museological commitment to institutional transparency. As a post-graduate student, Jenny completed an archival internship at the University of Glasgow Archive Services, a curatorial internship at Summerlee Museum, as well as volunteered as an exhibition assistant at the University Chapel Gallery. In 2015, Jenny completed her first year as a PhD student at the University of Glasgow. Her proposed dissertation focused on the nationalist impact of forgery in eighteenth-century England.

Allyson Melchor

Allyson Melchor brings over 11 years of experience in provenance and attribution research, artist representation and art sales with her career in New York auction houses, galleries and artist foundations. In her role at a leading global auction house in New York, Allyson specialized in post-sale analysis of auction revenue and client bidding/buying trends and led a team initiative to increase data integrity and efficiency of the company’s 50,000+ client database. Her Master’s thesis, The Art World Divided: How the Catalogue Raisonné Defines the Scholar, the Artist and the Market focused on extensive art historical, attribution and authenticity research. Allyson holds an MA in Arts Administration from Columbia University in New York and a BA in Anthropology from Bates College. She is a member of the Catalogue Raisonné Scholars Association and has been on the Board of Trustees of the La Napoule Art Foundation since 2006.

Katherine Luer

Katherine Luer is a New Orleans native whose interests in art crime and museum security have, in the past, brought her to Washington, D.C., Scotland, and Italy. She has an undergraduate degree in Art History from Georgetown University and a Master’s Certificate from the Association for Research into Crimes Against Art (ARCA), where she wrote her dissertation on museums’ responses to catastrophic flooding events. Katherine is currently working towards her Master’s in Library Science in Archives Management at Simmons College in Boston.

Jenn Bentzen

Jenn Bentzen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Art and Art History from Bucknell University.  Throughout her undergraduate training she held internships focused on architecture and museum studies, including work with the Telfair Museum of Art, the Mighty 8th Air Force Museum in Savannah, Georgia, and Bucknell’s own art gallery.  Following graduation, Jenn changed tack and launched a career in federal government recruitment and development.  In 2012, she took a sabbatical to pursue post-graduate studies in International Art Crime through the Association for Research into Crimes against Art (ARCA) in Amelia, Italy.  Though having since returned to recruitment and development, Jenn continues to pursue projects related to art crime and the criminal psychology associated with these crimes.  She assisted Colette Loll with her traveling exhibition Intent to Deceive: Fakes and Forgeries in the Art World and her intent is to build on her ARCA thesis, Understanding the Criminal: An Investigative Model of Art Forgery, and is planning additional studies in criminal and investigative psychology for the near future.

Hannah Jones

Hannah Jones is a recent UCLA graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Art History and a passion for all things art. As an undergraduate, Hannah had the opportunity to study the legal, scientific, and philosophical aspects of fakes and forgeries through research as well as placements in several California museums, including the Bowers Museum and the Hammer Museum, among others. She is currently working as an assistant with the Smithsonian Women’s Committee in Washington, DC and interns once a week with the Museum Conservation Institute in Suitland, Maryland.