Art lovers have been scandalized by forged paintings, but what about an entirely fake artist? Bruce Sargeant is a creation of painter, sculptor, and set designer Mark Beard—Sargeant, who supposedly died in a wrestling accident, is entirely made up—but he’s still got a show at Chelsea’s CLAMPART and, from what we can tell, it’s no joke.
Sargeant is actually rather successful. Not only do his depictions of an athletic, classic male form hang in Abercrombie & Fitch store all over the world, but in 2010 he released a book, Bruce Sargeant and His Circle: Figure and Form, in which he collaborated with Bear’s other creations, from Hippolyte-Alexandre Michallon, Bruce's Classicist teacher, to his Modernist lesbian best friend Edith Thayer Cromwell, and Abstract Expressionist art-school rival Brechtholdt Streeruwitz.
Now, liberated from the page, a collection of Sargeant’s work (as well as that of Michallon) is on display through May 12. Curious to see what it’s all about? SLIDESHOW: Check out our slideshow here. Also, read "The Double Life of Bruce Sargeant."