DENVER -- These days you can find everything from original paintings to reproductions of works by the great Masters online, but art experts warn that what may look like a Picasso could be worth about as much as a paint by numbers picture at some commercial art auctions.
Nic Brooks tells FOX31 he paid $1,000 for what he thought was a valuable Andy Warhol Marilyn Monroe print at an art sale.
He says the print even came with authenticity papers, but when he had it appraised he learned it wasn’t worth more than a few dollars.
“I was hoping to find something of value. The appraiser told me it was worth nothing. I was devastated. I felt like I'd been robbed.” Brooks says when he tried to contact the seller the number was disconnected.
Mikkel Saks, is one of only 2,000 certified art appraisers in the nation. Saks Galleries in Cherry Creek is the oldest art gallery in the western United States.
Saks says an authentic Warhol print will cost between $50,000 and $200,000.
He advises anyone looking to begin an art collection to ask for references before buying online or at auctions. The best way to safely purchase authentic art is to select pieces from trusted galleries, which can provide proof of origin.
Brooks says it is also important to remember that “if it seems too good to be true it probably is.”