Noah Charney

noah charney

Noah's Latest News

Bled Film Festival

Noah has been recruited as "Selector of Feature Films" for the first annual Bled Film Festival, which will be held in Bled, Slovenia June 17-21.  This new festival features high-profile stars among its founders, from Hollywood and the Balkans.  Noah will be choosing eight films to be screened and contend for juried prizes, plus four films shown for free in an open air theater on the shores of Lake Bled, often called the most beautiful place on earth.  For more information, visit

Cultural Heritage Research Prize

Noah is one of a select number of jury members for a brand new prize, established by the Institute of Cultural Diplomacy and former Italian Minister of Culture, Francesco Rutelli.  The Cultural Heritage Research Prize will be awarded annually to someone who distinguishes themselves in the field of cultural heritage protection and recovery.  The prestigious prize includes a substantial cash award as well.  Noah's fellow jurors include  Rutelli, Mounir Bouchenaki, Bonnie Burnham, Jack Lang, Giovanni Nistri, Peter Watson, Hanna Pennock, Ismail Serageldin, and Stefano de Caro.  More information is available here.

Noah's BBC and National Geographic Documentaries

Noah appears as a guest expert and presenter on two TV documentaries this winter.  "The World's Most Expensive Stolen Paintings" appears on BBC2 on December 21, 2013 and "Hunting Hitler's Stolen Art Treasures" appears on Nat Geo Channel on February 5, 2014.

Invited to Consult to UN on Art Crime
Noah has been invited to participate in this year's ISPAC meeting on art crime. ISPAC is the International Scientific and Professional Advisory Committee to the United Nations' Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Program.

The History of Art in 12 Paintings
Noah has been chosen by The Teaching Company to prepare a featured course for their prestigious Great Courses series. He will film a course of his design, called "The History of Art in 12 Paintings," which will be published in the summer of 2015. Noah is the youngest professor ever to be featured in the Great Courses series.

Art Crime Conference at the V&A Museum in London (7 November)
Through ARCA, Noah is organizing a day-long symposium on art crime, hosted by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. The symposium will be held on 7 November 2013 and will consist of two sessions, one on "Art Forgery and Provenance," the other on "Art Recovery and Rewards." Speakers include Noah, Vernon Rapley, Richard Ellis, Charlie Hill, Claire Hutcheon, and Jonathan Jones. Tickets are free but must be reserved in advance.

TED 2014 Finalist
Noah is a finalist to be one of the twenty annual TED Fellows at the main TED event in 2014. Fingers crossed!

Writing for Esquire
Noah is thrilled to announce that he has begun to write for his favorite magazine, Esquire. You can find links to his articles on his Articles page or on his blog.

Noah in The New Yorker
Noah is quoted as an expert on art forgery in a recent New Yorker feature article about Mark Landis.

Noah's "The Secret History of Art" Blog

  • Art Forger Bought a Fake Submarine with Ill-Gotten Gains

    Recently-convicted art forger, John Re, made around $2.5 million forging artists like de Kooning and Pollock, and bought what appears to be a “movie prop” submarine with the proceeds.  Too late to include in my forthcoming THE ART OF FORGERY book, but a crazy case nonetheless.  Not the best idea to engage in conspicuous consumption and buy a submarine with the fruits of your art forgeries…

  • The Greatest Skier in History

    The Secret History of Art recently published an article on Tina Maze, the world’s greatest skier, male or female, who has just begun the latest World Cup ski season.  It ran in The Atlantic magazine, and if you’re not already watching the pro ski circuit, this is a good time to tune in, to see the Michael Jordan of the sport take on Lindsey Vonn and a bevvy of rivals…

  • Illustrated History of Forgery: a new book from Phaidon

    The Secret History of Art’s next book will be released by Phaidon in May 2015.  Entitled THE ART OF FORGERY: CASE STUDIES IN DECEPTION, it is an illustrated history of forgery, focusing on art but dealing also with other fields, from wine to religious relics, and organized by motivation of past forgers.

    Learn more here.  And you can watch a short promotional video here.

  • You Should Really Be Reading This: Kate Zambreno & Eimear McBride

    The second entry in my new column for The Believer, “You Should Really Be Reading This,” is live. This month I interview the great Kate Zambreno, and we discuss her pick of the hidden-gem novel that we should all be reading: “A Cannibal and Melancholy Mourning” by Catherine Mavrikakis.

    And in case you missed it, here’s the first entry, featuring Eimear McBride:

  • 10 Scariest Stories Ever Written

    In honor of Halloween, the Secret History of Art is pleased to present a series of short essays on what I consider the scariest stories ever written.  These come from a project I did last year for the New Haven Review, in which I read thirty famous short stories in thirty days, to study the art form.  The theme of the stories I liked most was an atmosphere of what I call “creeping dread” that was present, whether or not the story in question really qualifies as a horror story.  But the result, the pleasurable tingle that we get from a good ghost story, was present in so many of them, that they can safely be considered among the scariest stories ever written, whether or not scaring the reader was the primary goal of the author.  Here is my personal list, with the added bonus of each title being linked to an essay of mine about the story, as it appeared in the New Haven Review.  Happy reading and happy Halloween!

    Story Playlist 14: The Yellow Wallpaper

    Charlotte Perkins Gillman’s tale of a woman slowly going mad.  When the figures start crawling out of the wallpaper…

    Story Playlist 11: A Rose for Emily

    William Faulkner ends this story with a mega-whopper of a surprise that gives me the creeps even as I think of it now…

    Story Playlist 8: The Monkey’s Paw

    The ultimate morality tale of “be careful what you wish for” is a good example of the proto-zombie genre.

    Story Playlist 5: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

    I grew up with Washington Irving’s tale in the format of the Disney animated movie, but the original is plenty scary–there’s something devilish about early American, Puritanical settlements (see also “The Minister’s Black Veil” and “The Colour Out of Space”)/

    Story Playlist 4: The Fall of the House of Usher

    Many works by Edgar Allan Poe could feature in such a list, and many focus on his obsession with live burial, but this one gets into your head more than the others.

    Story Playlist 2: The Minister’s Black Veil

    Hawthorne’s tale is a ghost story crossed with a whodunit. We try to figure out what, exactly, is going on, and what happened between the minister and the dead girl, but whatever it is, it’s creepy.

    Story Playlist 31: Sredni Vashtar

    A story that is as bad-ass as short fiction can get.  What kid wouldn’t want to keep a man-eating weasel in their garden shed?

    Story Playlist 25: Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?

    Joyce Carol Oates combines vampires with “Southern Gothic” in this urgent, sweat-inducing tale based on a true story.  The bad guy’s wearing boots with stuffed toes, so he walks like an animal, always gets me.

    Story Playlist 29: One for the Road

    It’s hard to choose just one Stephen King story: “Children of the Corn” got strong consideration, and both stories, from the same collection, feature horrifying monstrous children–which is always freakier than horrifying, monstrous adults.

    But the winner is…

    Story Playlist 9: The Colour Out of Space

    The scariest story I’ve ever read is H. P. Lovecraft’s weird tale where the villain is an amorphous floating colo(u)r from outer space, which does not sound scary at all, but man oh man, just read this…

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