Authentication Service

Authentication Service

The Ben Enwonwu Foundation offers a research and authentication service for artworks attributed to Ben Enwonwu.

Our expertise in the work of Ben Enwonwu and archive of unpublished resources makes us uniquely placed to assess your artwork through visual analysis and in-depth research. We are trusted by museums, galleries and auction houses, as well as private collectors worldwide.

The authentication process begins with a research enquiry.

Our research and authentication service is divided into two logical stages for cost effectiveness and efficiency:

Stage 1: Research Enquiries (Fee: N25,000.00 + VAT per object)

Complete our online enquiry form with as much information as possible about your artwork including:

  • Name and location of the current owner
  • History of ownership (provenance)
  • Title of the work
  • Medium
  • Dimensions
  • Images of the work including close-ups of any labels, marks or signature
  • Specific questions or concerns that you have

Our research team will then cross-reference the information provided with published and unpublished resources including:

  • The Ben Enwonwu catalogue raisonné of sculpture, drawings and graphics
  • Records of previously uncatalogued and unpublished works
  • The Foundation’s digital database of Ben Enwonwu artworks
  • Our database of recorded fakes and misattributions
  • Material from the Ben Enwonwu Archive including sales and exhibition catalogues, correspondence and diaries
  • Comparative works in The Ben Enwonwu Foundation Collection

When we have completed our research, we will send you our recommendation via email, confirming:

  • If the work is by Ben Enwonwu
  • If the information submitted ties in with our records
  • Whether the work should be seen by the Ben Enwonwu authentication committee
  • How the work is catalogued – title, date, medium and catalogue reference number (for works by Enwonwu)
  • Any other specific information requested in the initial enquiry

If stage 1 proves inconclusive, we may recommend applicants to submit their artwork to the authentication committee for further analysis. Our committee of experts will review the preliminary research and examine the artwork before offering an opinion.

Stage 2: Authentication Committee (Fee: N75,000.00 + VAT per object)

Applicants will need to arrange for the work to be delivered to the Foundation in Ikoyi, Lagos between 7 and 10 days in advance of the meeting. Appliocants are solely responsible for arranging and covering the cost of transport and insurance.

The authentication committee will examine the artwork and accompanying information in detail. The meeting includes the following:

  • Review research findings
  • Physical examination of the artwork to include stylistic and technical analysis
  • Comparative analysis of style, technique, material, dimensions, etc, with related works in The Ben Enwonwu Foundation Collection, unpublished photographic records and digital database

After the committee meeting, the Foundation will issue a letter confirming:

  • Whether the work is by Ben Enwonwu
  • How the work is catalogued – title, date, medium and catalogue reference number (for works by Ben Enwonwu)
  • Answers to specific research questions