Translated by Paul David Young
A thrilling, eye-popping look at true crime in the billion-dollar art world.
The art world is one of the most secretive of global businesses, and the list of its crimes runs long and deep. Today, with prices in the hundreds of millions for individual artworks, and billionaires' collections among the most conspicuous and liquid of their assets, crime is more rampant than ever in this largely unregulated universe. Increased prices and globalization have introduced new levels of fraud and malfeasance into the art world--everything from "artnapping," in which an artwork is held hostage and only returned for a ransom, to forgery and tax fraud. However, the extent of the economic and cultural damage that results from criminality in the global art scene rarely comes to light. The stories of high-stakes, brazen art crimes told by art experts Stefan Koldehoff and Tobias Timm are by turns thrilling, disturbing, and unbelievable (the imagination for using art to commit crimes seems boundless). The authors also provide a well-founded analysis of what needs to change in the art market and at museums.
From the authors of False Pictures, Real Money (about the Beltracchi art forgery case), Art & Crime includes a chapter on art owned by Donald Trump. It is a thoroughly researched, explosive, and highly topical book that uncovers the extraordinary and multifarious thefts of art and cultural objects around the world.