Hattiesburg library hosts state premiere of "Art and Craft"

Hattiesburg library hosts state premiere of "Art and Craft"

The state premiere screening of Art and Craft will take place at the Hattiesburg Library on January 22.

"We are very excited. The film has just won one of the top five documentaries from the National Review Board. It just has great reviews," said Hattiesburg library director Pamela Pridgen. "It's been shown at probably 15 film festivals and now it's coming here to Hattiesburg."

Art and Craft is a documentary film about art forger Mark Landis and the museum registrar, who spent years tracking him down. The Laurel native has fooled museums across the country with his fake masterpieces.

Pridgen said the library has always had a soft spot for local art and obviously good stories like this one.

"We knew the film had a local tie and it's such an intriguing story, so we wanted to bring it back to the community," said Pridgen.

Pridgen has spoken with Landis multiple times and said he is a very sweet man.

"He is an incredibly talented painter and just a very nice and generous man," said Pridgen.

His generosity is what kept him out of legal trouble because Landis was donating his copies to museums so, he wasn't doing anything illegal.

Pridgen said Landis also donated three pieces of his original artwork to the library. The pieces will be on display the night of January 22 before the film screening.

This is a free event, but residents need to have a ticket to get in. Tickets are available starting this Saturday, January 17. Residents can reserve them by going to hattlibrary.com.