What is a COA and why are they important?

A Certificate of Authenticity is a bit like an artwork’s birth certificate, passport and quality guarantee all rolled into one.

Find peace in mind knowing when you shop at GallArt.com that the artwork you purchase is genuine and always comes with a Certificate of Authenticity.

Screen Shot 2015-06-04 at 12.48.22 PMWhat Is a Certificate of Authenticity?

A Certificate of Authenticity is a bit like an artwork’s birth certificate, passport and quality guarantee all rolled into one.

Essentially, a COA is a document, created by the artist or someone who is an expert on the artist, which accompanies an artwork and contains all the information a collector could need to verify if the piece of art is genuine.

A Certificate of Authenticity (COA) provides a lot of concrete detail about a piece, but by existing for a particular piece, it says even more. An artwork that has a COA is one that is made by a professional practicing artist, not an amateur. It is a piece that has collectible value. The Certificate adds a tangible credibility to the work. It can help the work hold its value.

The COA is held to be an indirect promise of quality. Art pieces that have a COA have usually been made by an artist who cares about their work, its longevity and their collectors. The piece is likely to have been created from the best materials available, be designed to last and been created by an expert. Back to the concrete details, the Certificate will provide all the information on the medium(s) of the piece needed for conservation that might otherwise be lost forever.

Certificates protect the artist and the buyer by helping to prove that an artwork is original. Cheap copies sold without an artist’s knowledge or consent is unfortunately common. Without a COA attached, this situation makes it next to impossible for the buyer to be confident of the value of the piece or for the artist to maintain their credibility and their livelihood.

As an art collector, you really must only buy Fine Art pieces that are backed by a Certificate of Authenticity. This helps ensure that what you have bought at a premium is genuine and not counterfeit.

Warhol Is A Major Character In Philip Pearlstein’s Authobiography

Andy Warhol (left) and Philip Pearlstein with classmates at Carnegie Tech. COURTESY PHILIP PEARLSTEIN
Andy Warhol (left) and Philip Pearlstein with classmates at Carnegie Tech.
COURTESY PHILIP PEARLSTEIN

In 1946, after three years in the army, Philip Pearlstein returned to his hometown of Pittsburgh and became an art student at the Carnegie Institute of Technology. Here, in an excerpt from his autobiography in progress, Pearlstein remembers his student years, his friendship with the young man at the next easel named Andy Warhol, and their struggles to establish their careers in New York City.

“During the next three years, Andy’s easel remained next to mine in painting and life-drawing classes, and we became close friends. His drawings and paintings were always eccentric and charming, as if the styles of Paul Klee, Egon Schiele, and Ben Shahn had been combined. The rest of us almost always produced more traditional realist work, at least until our junior year, when aspects of modernism began to dominate and we became more inventive and experimental, while Andy continued on his own way.” (via artnews.com)

Read the full article here.

Check out our Philip Pearlstein collection here & our Andy Warhol collection here.