Sentence Elimination -The Authenticity of an Artwork

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Sentence Elimination- The Authenticity of an Artwork

  1. On the sliding scale of attribution that art historians use – painted by; hand of; studio of; circle of; style of; copy of – each step takes the artist farther from the painting.
  2. If a fake is so expert that even after the most thorough examination its authenticity is still open to doubt, is it not as satisfactory a work of art as if it were genuine?
  3. Leaving straight forgeries aside, any discussion about the “authenticity” of an artwork opens suddenly, like a trapdoor, into the murk of semantics.
  4. Added to this is the unease about overpainting: Salvator Mundi had been worked over so many times and so heavily, critics argue, that it is less by Da Vinci than by his restorers.


  • Correct Answer
    Choice B

Detailed Solution

Tricky question. Let us consider the sentences one by one.

Sentence A talks of a "sliding scale of attribution" art historians use. When a painting is 'painted by' an artist, the degree of association between the artist and painting is obviously higher than if the painting merely showed the 'hand of' the artist. The other terms 'studio of', 'circle of', 'style of' and 'copy of' are clearly arranged in decreasing order of association between the artist and the painting.

Sentence B is rhetorical. The point it makes is that an expert fake is as satisfactory a work of art as a genuine one. This is a new idea. It is not clear right away how B relates to A, if at all.

Sentence C talks of 'the murk of semantics' that any discussion about the 'authenticity' of an art work opens. Now, sentence A too relates to semantics, as it discusses terms used by art historians to associate an artist with a painting. Also, both C and A relate to the idea of authenticity of an artwork, about how much the artwork can be associated with the artist. CA is a link. One more point to note here is that C does not include 'straight forgeries' in the discussion about the authenticity of an artwork. Sentence B, which talks of fakes i.e forgeries, is unlikely to be part of a paragraph which includes C.

Sentence D talks of the 'unease' about 'overpainting'. It declares that Savator Mundi has been worked over too many times and is so heavily overpainted that it is 'less by Da Vinci than by his restorers'. D clearly relates to the idea in A about how closely a painting can be attributed to an artist. In a paragraph, D would follow A as it adds to the point made in A.

CAD makes a cogent paragraph. B is the odd one out.

Correct Answer: Choice (B)

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