The Man Who Exposed the Absurdity of the Art Market
And All Because of an Incorrectly Labelled Tube of Paint
Perhaps the greatest art forgery scandal of all time is unfolding in Germany right now. The perpetrator has been caught, and is behind bars. Who knows how many ‘valuable’ paintings hanging in museums and private collections around the world are in fact the work of one man, a certain Wolfgang Beltracchi from Freiburg. I have assembled all the articles which were published in Der Spiegel, and the fascinating story may be read here on a sub-page of this blog because it is quite extensive.
My take on this is: Yes he was wrong, very wrong to do what he did. It is unfair too, to everyone, and especially, in my view, to his fellow artists whose work he ‘stole’… but he is a highly talented artist nonetheless, even admirable in some way, and it is a pity he chose to apply his gift in this way. But doesn’t this all make one think a little about the whole concept of the ‘experts’, the ‘art market’, and so on?