Don't be fooled into buying a 'Lowry'

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Stephen Lowry grew up in Stretford, now a suburb of Manchester and most of his work portrays desolate urban landscapes and anonymous busy figures.

His drawings range from scribbled sketches on the back of envelopes, and doodles on hotel napkins, to highly finished works for exhibition.

During his lifetime Lowry gave works to friends and collectors as well as selling them through his dealers.

In the 1960s and 1970s Lowry signed many commercially produced prints which were often issued in editions of 850.

These have also become collectable and fetch a high price with signed edition prints selling for £900 plus at auctions.  Inevitably there are a large number of fake Lowry drawings and paintings in circulation, notably on eBay. 

The usual ruse for a seller is to say they have no history of where the drawing or painting has been before coming into their hands (the provenance) and that they are having to sell the picture as 'after Lowry' or 'in the style of' or 'in the manner of'.

There is also a tendency to say the picture has been drawn on old paper, or board to lend it age and give you reassurance that the picture wasn't drawn or painted the day before. Most of them have been. 

Sellers will have you believe their listing of no provenance is an honest one, that they are abiding by eBay's seller rules and have no idea of whether the drawing or painting is genuine. 

Ask yourself this: why would anyone list a painting or drawing as 'LS Lowry' if they were not out to fool people into believing that their drawing or painting
 is an authentic work by Lowry?      

The question you should ask a seller is whether they've ever had the drawing or painting verified by an auction house or a fine art gallery who deal regularly in the artist’s work. 

Lowry's real signature is below. Most 'Lowry' signatures on fake paintings or drawings and prints are very different to this.   

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