Prova Group Takes on Counterfeit Artwork, Ensures Authenticity for Collectors
Irving-based Company Partners with Artfest International to Protect the Value of Limited-Edition, Signed and Numbered Art and Photography
IRVING, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fear of purchasing counterfeit artwork soon will be a thing of the past for many art collectors, thanks to digital technology from Prova Group, Inc.
The company has signed a letter of understanding with Artfest International, Inc., which prints and sells limited-edition, signed and numbered fine art and photography. Under the agreement, Prova will provide Artfest with a patent-pending secure digital system that ensures signature authenticity and helps mitigate fraud.
Fraud and counterfeiting are prevalent in the fine arts marketplace, and until now, art collectors had to rely on paper certificates and numbered stickers that assert a piece’s authenticity,” said Edward Vakser, chief executive officer for Artfest. “Unfortunately, paper and label documentation can be even easier to forge than the artwork itself.”
Charlie Humphreyson, chief executive officer for Prova, said his company’s solution provides the efficiency and security of digital technology by replacing the function of paper certificates, just as e-mail replaced paper memos.
“When a collector purchases artwork or photography from Artfest, a Prova Tag™ will already be affixed to it. Prova’s electronic tag provides a unique “fingerprint” of data, which is linked to a record in the Prova registry,” Humphreyson said. “The Prova Tag then can be used to easily verify the item’s authenticity via the tag data and a comparison to our online database. Also, if the artwork is ever lost or stolen, the Prova Tag can aid in the recovery process.”
“We showcase pieces created by renowned artists whose work is in high demand,” said Artfest’s Vakser. “By ensuring the authenticity of each work of art, we are protecting the integrity of our company and providing peace of mind for our discriminating customers.”
This is Prova Group’s first venture in the fine arts marketplace. Previously, the company has focused its digital solution on the sports collectibles market for autographs and game-worn equipment. For non-Prova tagged signed sports memorabilia, the chances of an item being authentic range between two percent and 50 percent, according to leading sports collectible experts.
“Prova’s technology has already made a significant and positive impact for sports memorabilia collectors,” said Dan Werner, Prova’s vice president of marketing and business. “They can purchase that signed football or jersey they’ve always wanted with confidence – as long as it carries a Prova Tag. By teaming up with Artfest, we’ll now be able to provide that same assurance for collectors of limited edition, artist-signed fine art.”
About Prova Group, Inc.
Prova Group is an Irving, Texas-based company applying innovative uses of digital technology for the authentication, certification and registration of a wide range of collectibles, including sports memorabilia, entertainment collections, fine art and antiquities. For more information, please visit www.provagroup.com.
About Artfest International Inc.
Artfest International, Inc. is a publicly traded company under the symbol ARTI.OB. Artfest (www.artfestinternational.com) prints, markets, and sells limited edition, signed and numbered fine art and collectibles to its members, which include collectors, dealers, artists, decorators, designers, private collectors and investors. Artfest drives membership through its proprietary direct-sales e-commerce venue (www.artchannelgalleries.com), syndicated TV programming (www.artchannel.tv), brick and mortar galleries, online auctions (www.myartfest.com), and membership awards programs. Membership is free and includes a member branded, direct-sales e-commerce website having full back-office support including a merchant account, just-in-time inventory and fulfillment.
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