As in, I am soliciting one. Or many. It depends. This morning I was reading Der Spiegel’s interview with art forger and “hippie-like desperado” Wolfgang Beltracchi and I think his idea — somewhat problematic in execution, though strictly speaking it’s his €34 million in ill-gotten gains that are problematic — was a good one:
Beltracchi’s principle was not to copy the paintings of the Expressionists, but, as he says, to fill the gaps in their bodies of work. Either he invented new paintings and motifs, tying in to specific creative phases in the artists’ lives, or he created paintings whose titles appear in lists of the respective painters’ works but which were believed to have been lost — and of which no images existed.
I am going to spend the rest of the day browsing this list of lost works. An immediately tempting assignment-to-self: “Several pages of the original screenplay for Werner Herzog’s Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes were reportedly thrown out of the window of a bus after one of his football team-mates threw up on them.” There are also some Mayan codices no one has seen since 1562, an Elizabethan-era play called “Hot Anger Soon Cold,” and the journal of an ambassador’s wife “burnt by her daughter on the grounds that it contained much scandal and satire.” If any of you keep a mental list of writers’ works believed to have been lost, you are very welcome to suggest something.
a mysterious book looking back at you:
it’s The Wondrous Mushroom: Mycolatry in Mesoamerica via BeatBooks