The high-end art world is one of the most secretive—and largely unregulated—global enterprises. The list of its associations with crime runs long and deep from art theft to tax fraud, to forgery, and money laundering.
Join Michael and his guests Stefan Koldehoff and Tobias Timm as they discuss their new book, Art and Crime, The Fight Against Looters, Forgers, and Fraudsters in the High-Stakes Art World.
Joining Michael as a special guest to help facilitate this conversation is Dr. Philip Eliasoph, Professor of Art History & Visual Culture at Fairfield University, Connecticut.
Stefan Koldehoff and Tobias Timm
Stefan Koldehoff, born in 1967, is culture editor at Deutschlandfunk in Cologne, and writes for Die Zeit and art – Das Kunstmagazine among other publications. In 2008 he received the Puk journalist prize for his investigative research. Koldehoff and Tobias Timm are the author of Art and Crime, and in 2012, they published False Pictures, Real Money on the Beltracchi case. The book was awarded the Prix Annette Giacometti and the Otto Brenner Prize. Galiani also published his books The Pictures Are Among Us: The Nazi-Looted Art Business and the Gurlitt Case (2014) and Me and Van Gogh: Pictures, Collectors and Their Adventurous Stories (2015). KOLDEHOFF and TOBIAS TIMM were recently counted among the 100 most influential people in the art business by the national German magazine monopol.
Tobias Timm, born in 1975 in Munich, studied urban ethnology, history, and cultural studies in Berlin and New York. He has written for Die Zeit’s feature pages from Berlin on architecture, art, and crime. In 2012, he and Stefan Koldehoff published False Pictures, Real Money on the Beltracchi case. The book was awarded the Prix Annette Giacometti and the Otto Brenner Prize. TIMM and STEFAN KOLDEHOFF were recently counted among the 100 most influential people in the art business by the national German magazine monopol.
Dr. Philip Eliasoph
Professor of Art History & Visual Culture, Dept of Visual & Performing Arts. As founder of Fairfield’s Art History program (1975), Professor Eliasoph has been devoted to expanding students’ knowledge, understanding and direct observation of world art. Sharing his passion for the history of art, he has focused on western art in the traditional and revolutionary contexts. Publishing on Renaissance models, ‘bel disegno’ academic, canonical methods, his writing and public views converge on the muscular shifts of mid century American art styles – from Social Realism to avant-gardist Abstract Expressionism. In his critique of recycling styles, he proposes a history of art without labels, periods, or categorizations. More broadly, his lectures and museum tours are based on the continuum of style/zeitgeist progress from antiquity to the cyber age. The heritage of painting, sculpture, architecture and mass media as revealing ‘mirrors of time, place, and society.’ Combining Ignatian inspired ‘discernment’ with the humanistic qualities of aesthetic enjoyment, his lively, dynamic talks expand the pleasures of viewing the visual arts. Setting out with basic questions – speaking with freshman students or senior, lifelong art lovers, we come to explore: ‘what is Art?’* ‘why does humanity treasure its values?’* ‘how can I learn to actively critique, analyze and appreciate art as part of my own intellectual, emotional, and spiritual growth as a fully realized human being”?
In sync with an educated audience’s aspirations to follow Jefferson’s idea of ‘life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,’ he hopes to inspire and delight art enthusiasts of all ages. Often invited as a public lecturer, connoisseur and animated raconteur, his hope is to share his own artistic journeys as multi-dimensional ‘classroom/museum without walls.’ With decades of ‘in country’ art directed programs, he has escorted thousands of art pilgrims to museums, cultural landmarks, world heritage sites throughout the US and Europe. After a career as a regional art critic, publishing reviews for daily newspapers and magazines, he has been the weekly blogger for The New York Times InEducation global curriculum platform. Founder, moderator and host of the university’s community based ‘Open VISIONS Forum’ public affairs programs, he has enjoyed stage dialogues with many important 21st Century thinkers.
Connecting art of the past with issues and contexts of today – he guides us to visually explore the masterpieces of ancient, Renaissance, modern and contemporary artworks – all the more enriching as we come to realize why: ‘Art Really Matters!’
Michael Zeldin is a well-known and highly-regarded TV and radio analyst/commentator.
He has covered many high-profile matters, including the Clinton impeachment proceedings, the Gore v. Bush court challenges, Special Counsel Robert Muller’s investigation of interference in the 2016 presidential election, and the Trump impeachment proceedings.
In 2019, Michael was a Resident Fellow at the Institute of Politics at the Harvard Kennedy School, where he taught a study group on Independent Investigations of Presidents.
Previously, Michael was a federal prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice. He also served as Deputy Independent/ Independent Counsel, investigating allegations of tampering with presidential candidate Bill Clinton’s passport files, and as Deputy Chief Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives, Foreign Affairs Committee, October Surprise Task Force, investigating the handling of the American hostage situation in Iran.
Michael is a prolific writer and has published Op-ed pieces for CNN.com, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Hill, The Washington Times, and The Washington Post.
Follow Michael on Twitter: @michaelzeldin
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