NEW YORK, NY.- Film Forum presents the U.S. theatrical premiere of Arne Birkenstock’s Beltracchi: The Art of Forgery beginning Wednesday, August 19. 60 Minutes called Wolfgang Beltracchi a “con man of epic proportions” and dubbed him and his wife Helene, “the Bonnie and Clyde of the art world.” For nearly 40 years the charming and effervescent Beltracchi produced hundreds of meticulous works of art, forgeries of early and mid-20th century artists, using old canvases and distressed frames scoured from flea markets and paints whose pigments he ground himself. Amazingly, he didn’t reproduce known paintings, but, working in an artist’s style, would create entirely new “masterpieces.”
A large Max Ernst that took him three days to produce could easily fetch $5 million. Beltracchi was put on trial in 2011, but he readily admits that the handful of forgeries for which he was held accountable are just the tip of the iceberg. Many others remain on the walls of some of the world’s greatest art museums and private collectors. Filmmaker Arne Birkenstock, whose father was Beltracchi’s attorney, has unprecedented access to the controversial forger, capturing his unique personality: a bizarre mix of candor and cunning, insouciance and joie de vivre.
WAAM is hoping to show this movie in 2016 as part of the WAAM Events program.
Categories: Random interesting art stuff