The Hippy and the Expressionists
May 26, 2012 4:42 PM Subscribe
Confessions of a Genius Art Forger
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— In one of Germany's greatest art scandals, former hippie and talented artist Wolfgang Beltracchi forged dozens of paintings over a period of 35 years, earning millions and fooling top collectors and museums. In a SPIEGEL interview, he reveals how he did it and why he eventually got caught. Photo Gallery.
Background...Investigators Zero in on Massive Art Forgery Scandal
— Over the past 15 years, the art world has been amazed at the number of lost expressionist masterpieces from the early 20th century that have found their way to auction. Investigators now believe that many of them could be forgeries. An ex-hippy, his wife and an art fan from Krefeld may be behind the scandal.
Germany's Mega-Forgery Scandal Gets Even Bigger
— It was already thought to be the biggest art forgery scandal in Germany since World War II. Now, documents show that Wolfgang Beltracchi may have been copying early 20th century expressionists since the mid-1980s. He may even have sold one forgery to the artist's widow.
German Art Forgery Scandal Reaches Hollywood
— The scope of what is believed to be Germany's biggest art forgery scandal since World War II has reached as far as Hollywood. American actor Steve Martin bought one of the fake paintings in 2004 and later sold it at a loss of some 200,000 euros.
Forgery Scandal Embarrasses International Art World
— More details are emerging about what is thought to be Germany's biggest postwar art forgery scandal. The affair casts an unflattering light on a leading German art historian who authenticated a fake artwork supposedly painted by German surrealist Max Ernst. The piece was sold for $7 million to Daniel Filipacchi, a top New York art collector.
Art Forger All Smiles After Guilty Plea Seals Deal
— The trial in the most spectacular case of art forgery ever seen in Germany is over -- and ringleader Wolfgang Beltracchi can be happy with the outcome. Because of his confession, the millionaire fraudster has been given a virtual slap on the wrist, while the truth has been sacrificed for a deal.
Ringleader Reveals He Faked Many More Works
— In one of the most spectacular art forgery cases in German history, fraudster Wolfgang Beltracchi was sentenced to six years in prison last autumn. Set to begin doing time in March 2012, he tells SPIEGEL the scope of his counterfeiting was far greater than previously known, including works by some 50 artists.