© Real Fiction

Der Illusionist
Germany 2022

Opening 27 Apr 2023

Directed by: Birgit Schulz
Writing credits: Marita Loosen-Fox

Who is Helge Achenbach? Director Birgit Schutz takes up the challenge to reveal the complex personality of Helge Achenbach in this documentary. He was one of the world’s most prominent art consultants and in fact is described as the one who invented this métier. He is a man of action and through his charismatic traits has the ability to open doors which give him access to people and places which are out of reach to most. Unless you are interested in the art market, you may never have heard of him, but his life experiences were with famous artists including people like Joseph Beuys, Yoko Ono, and Gerhard Richter. He loved them and they loved him. It seemed like a win-win situation until 2015 when he was arrested for art fraud.

This documentary takes a look at his past, takes a look at his character, and takes a look at his current situation and where he is heading. It gives us an insight into how the art markets were created, how they work, as well as how greed can destroy one man’s reputation. But what are his options now? A fascinating portrait that shouldn’t be missed for anyone interested in art or investments. (Shelly Schoeneshoefer)

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