POV: Art & Craft

About This Episode


Mark Landis could be described as a genuine work of art. His Southern accent and genteel manner recall Truman Capote at his grandest. Art and Craft tells the story of the enigmatic, vastly talented and sometimes troubled man who, through hard work, perseverance and almost majestic chutzpah, fooled the art world for nearly a third of a century.

Unlike most art forgers, Landis was never in it for the money. He gave away his forgeries. One of his primary motivations, however, was universal: he wanted acceptance and respect. The documentary will likely earn him both, and perhaps confer cult status on the mild-mannered 59-year-old.

Eventually, the art world caught on in the name of Matthew Leininger, a former registrar at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. Leininger became suspicious of Landis and began looking into his history as a donor. Just as Landis fed an obsession for going on "philanthropic sprees" to museums across the nation, Leininger took the con very personally and soon developed his own obsession. Leininger's pursuit of his nemesis adds a cat-and-mouse element to Art and Craft.