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Now that we’re launched into 2011, I am spending some time looking back at what was a very difficult year professionally. There was the Google Bomb and the cyber mugging of Fine Art Register. There was the Federal Court trial in Port Huron, Michigan in which I was not as well used as I would like and the subsequent puzzling behavior of Albert Scaglione. There were lies and attacks from others and a significant loss of prestige and business.

At the same time, there was a tremendous swell of support and positive response on my behalf to all of this. When I look at the members of the Dali Study Group, the former clients, the colleagues and others who took time to express their continued support and admiration, I find that they represent the best and the most informed opinions. They are people who have looked at the facts, weighed the reputations of those involved, factored in their experiences of me over the years and have said quite clearly, “Bernard, we believe in you, regret the pain you have suffered, and know that those who do not treat you as you deserve are beneath our contempt.

These opinions–coming from people who really know–have sustained and energised me. These are the voices that repeatedly say, “Keep up the good work, Bernard. Continue to be the beacon of truth and integrity and don’t let the scum win.”

I am immensely grateful to those voices. I am grateful for their loyalty, their careful weighing of the facts and their courage in speaking out. It may be that a reputation carefully built over decades can be destroyed overnight, but these people have reminded me that I am not in that position.

Now it’s on to exciting new adventures. Next week at the High Museum in Atlanta catching up with Elliott King’s splendid presentation of Dali’s last forty years of work and his excellent catalog essay demonstrating its quality will be a marvelous way to kick off the Year of Return. That will be followed almost immediately by the Grand Opening of the fantastic new Salvador Dali Museum location in St. Petersburg. That will attract all of the brightest and the best from the world of Dali. Even if one of the low life creeps into the festivities, it will make no difference. I’ll be among those who know more about The Master than have gathered anywhere else.

Then in February I’ll spend several days in Mexico City with one of the most passionate–and best informed–Dali collectors I know of. That will hopefully be followed by the retrial of Park West Gallery v. Fine Art Registry, Theresa Franks et al. and I’ll hopefully be asked to contribute my expertise and perspectives.

Amidst all of this, I’ll have the always rewarding experience of talking with Dali collectors almost every day that I am in my office. I enjoy the telephone consultations so much and am pleased to always be able to provide more information than others are capable of. Those calls, in which I tell a client everything I know and they need to know about their Dali artwork, are always great fun. That’s true even when the discussion is about a fake because I have the opportunity to tell the collector stories about the scoundrels responsible.

Yes. Actually 2010 was a pretty exciting year and the positives clearly overshadow the smoggy parts. There are a lot of wonderful people out there and I am grateful to draw energy and pleasure from them. 2011 is going to be GREAT! On to the YEAR OF RETURN!