By | November 8, 2014 2 Comments

Margaret Keane’s ‘big eye portrait’ art fraud story made into a biopic

big_eyes+wIn the 1960s, a series of portraits depicting children with big eyes rocked the art world, selling prints and post cards in the millions. The artist was known to be Walter Keane.

In reality, the one with the paint brush in hand was really Keane’s wife — Margaret Keane.  Walter forced to live a prison-like existence, painting behind closed doors and windows for 16 hours a day, alone, with no friends, creating work he claimed to be his.

Margaret went along with the fraud for a while, then confessed the truth to a reporter from the UPI in October of 1970. Lawsuits, mud-slinging and divorce followed.

After publishing his memoirs — full of lies — Walter died in 2000. Margaret won her court case against him, but never saw a dime of compensation from her husband  for her work.

Margaret’s story — the true story — is the subject of a Tim Burton biopic, with Amy Adams playing the lead role. Margaret is now 87 years old.

The big-eyed children: The extraordinary story of an epic art fraud, from

Link supplied by a Lovefraud reader.


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What a classic case of sociopathic abuse. A sad, sad story. I’m glad it is being told.


I had one of these in my bedroom. A print of a big-eyed toddler in a harlequin outfit. It actually made me a bit sad, I didn’t like it and asked my mom to take it down. How awful for this woman. How weird that we never know the story behind so many things.

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