ART

Making It by Faking It: The Art Forger Who Sculpted Up Millions

Dec 16, 2014 at 2:07 PM ET

Mauro Morani was one of the most prolific art forgers in Italy. Coming from a family of tomb raiders in a small town known for its ancient ruins, creating and selling fake antiquities was just a part of growing up for Morani. By 17, he was under the wing of one of the country’s best forgers, a mentor who helped him grow his childhood pursuits into a booming business. He was soon making millions selling his forged art. Then the Italian government cracked down on the trade. Now he’s trying to scrape by, selling hand-painted tiles.