Home > Archive >peter hoffmeister, aka hoffSCHEISTER
Sat, Aug 25th, 2012 12:53:45 AM
Topic: peter hoffmeister, aka hoffSCHEISTER

Recently on the hali website and in the latest (but surely not greatest) issue readers are informed about an exhibition of Hoffscheister's Turkmen rugs and trappings that is being held in conjunction with the German Turkmen Collector's Annual meeting in Munich and environs.

RK.com is sure many of you who are long time fanciers of Turkmen rugs will recognize the Hoffscheister name. However, we are sure few if any of you know, as Paul Harvey the radio commentator ends his reports with, the the rest of the story.

Since we know it first hand, having made the error of getting involved with this duplicitous thief, we feel it is time to make it public and plan to do just that now.

These are not words, duplicitous or especially thief, one throws around carelessly and, trust us, we have more than enough positive proof to back up our statements.

So stay tuned here and we are sure you will not be disappointed.

Author: jc
Sat, Aug 25th, 2012 12:53:45 AM

RK has published far more about peter hoffmeister and following these links will lead interested readers to latest, our extensive and documented critique of the hoffmeister Turkmen rug collection book and some other comments on his efforts to sell his collection



Author: jc
Tue, Oct 4th, 2005 09:41:27 PM

RK spends many hours each day talking on the telephone with all sorts of folks who are involved with rugs -- either as collectors or dealers. We also talk to others who are not exclusively involved with rugs but buy and sell them as part of their businesses.

We do this to find pieces we want to buy and also to collect information and, often, gossip.

Since we started this mini-series on the rest of the hoffscheister story we have had some of our telephone respondents recount stories of their encounters with hoffscheister and not one of them had anything good to say about him either.

Most of them did not want us to make public their story but one very astute German-speaking dealer reminded us of one quite interesting episode in hoffscheister's rug career that would have probably not made it into our postings had he not mentioned it.

Before the wall came down and his bank account swelled up with German marks from the land he inherited and sold in East Germany, hoffscheister's main source of income, besides the money his daddy helped him with, came from washing rugs for collectors and dealers.

One of his best customers was maltzahn from rippon-boswell.

That was until hoffscheister screwed up several rugs maltzahn had given him to clean.

Eventually maltzahn took hoffscheister to court but hoffmeister was two steps ahead of ole fat-head detlef. He enlisted the aid of Peter Bausback as his star witness and although Peter is not, in our opinion, an expert of historic rugs he is an expert at making money in the rug business, an honest and forthright person and a very classy guy. We like him much.

Seems Peter showed up in court on hoffscheister's side and after taking the stand charmed the judge and entire courtroom, except of course maltzahn. Bausback took control of the situation and by the time he was done he, like the snake charmer with a melodious flute, had everyone and the judge spellbound and in his hand.

The judge quickly dismissed the case and maltzahn slithered off back to Friedrichstrasse to cry in his beer stein.

Too bad, really, because even though we did not see the rugs hoffscheister supposedly messed up in his efforts to wash them we can believe wholeheartedly the fact he did.

Let's remember we never said hoffscheister was stupid, he is at times smart as a fox, as he demonstrated in this instance. But who wants a sly fox in his chicken coop? Especially one who goes to great lengths to appear as a friend and good buddy, which is after all hoffscheister's accustomed modus operandi.

In all fairness to hoffscheister we should say he was not bad as a rug washer man, in fact, his work was far superior to what is done by little lord franses's longevity studio, a misnomer if there ever was one.

In fact, we are positive, many of the rugs cleaned by franses will not have their lives "longevitized" but rather shortened by the miserable processes they must be subjected to while in his supposed care.

As a case in point, we saw all of the Kelims that are now in the Jones Collection at the DeYoung Museum, many of the rugs in the Kirchheim Collection, especially the 'Faces' and Animal Rugs, as well as many of the pieces in the Christopher Alexander Collection before they were "longevitized".

We were aghast at the before and after differences and not to go into a long discussion let us state for the record the dreadful and unsightly surface de-patination all these pieces now exhibit is directly attributed to their longevity baths.

We say better dirty than de-patinated.

And with hoffscheister we say: If you do sit down to 'sup with him make sure you do it with a long spoon, a very long one.

Author: jc
Mon, Oct 3rd, 2005 11:07:07 PM

At Saturday’s opening of the hoffscheister collection, in a gallery outside Munich, around about 8 pm local time hoffscheister gave a "speech".

Soon after he was finished the phone at the gallery rang and a voice with a decidedly un-German accent asked to speak with him.

As he was summoned to the phone did hoffscheister know who it was? Well probably not, as clairvoyance isn't one of his virtues. In fact, if you ask us this, we'd have to state this low-life who wears a suit and drives a Mercedes Benz has no virtues, but back to Saturday at the gallery.

However, he must have known something was up as the timid and somewhat scared tone in his voice, as he said “Hello”, could not hide his nervousness.

Who could be calling him, he must have wondered.

Well he didn't have to strain his little brain for long as he heard the voice of his former co-author, aka RK, say:
"Congrats on your exhibition, hoffscheister. But don't forget I have not I forgotten the way you stole all the proceeds of the book I so kindly allowed you to participate in.

Nor have I forgotten the way you surreptitiously photographed snapshots, given to me by a world famous archaeologists, that were in my attaché case and then presented them as your own.

Nor has the theft of my ideas, again which you presented as your own, been forgotten as well.

At that point hoffscheister hung up the phone, like the little man and fool he is, without even uttering a word.

Why did he have nothing to say in response?

Because he knows it is all factual and true.

We cannot help but know our voice was echoing in the empty cavity housing the pea-brain of a man who has never done anything other than live in a house built for him by his father and live off the money his father and family acquired for the rest of that evening.

His one redeeming act has been to remain married to his wife and be a father to his two children. Otherwise hoffscheister's life has been pretty much about nothing other than self-gratitude and aggrandizement.

The two books about Turkmen Rugs his name is attached to were little of his own doing and the collection he has built was paid for by his father's money.

Speaking of his father's money, hoffscheister had little of that until his father died and then, lucky for him, the wall came down and properties his family owned in East Germany, that had formerly been worthless, suddenly shot up in value as the bricks that made up that wall came tumbling down.

We don’t begrudge hoffscheister's good fortune but we do his greedy, selfish, SOB mentality.

That's it for this installment of the rest of the hoffscheister story.

Stay tuned as we flesh out the thieving betrayal and sleazy grab-it-all modus operandi hoffscheister paid us back with for the friendship, trust and confidence we so honestly gave and for the knowledge and ideas we foolishly shared with him.

Sat, Oct 1st, 2005 09:39:53 PM

Just for the record. In my copy of Hoffmeister's book it says "In most collections growth and pruning take place at the same time, here little pruning has been needed."


Greetings Nameless from the Boston Area:
Duh, can't you read? What is the difference between what you have quoted and what we wrote??

We see none but then again we, unlike you, are not afraid to post under our name and hide behind a cloak of anonymity.

There is nothing worse, in our estimation, than a person who tries vainly to critique, criticize or to present an opposing point, or position, that is, in essence, nothing more than a pedantic and picayune exercise. On top of that your effort isn't even correct. Tsk Tsk

Here at RK.com we have experienced dumb and blind fools, like professor price=clown and others like you, before. But you, nameless one from Boston, win the prize in that category in price=clown's or any other dummy's absence.


Author: jc
Sat, Oct 1st, 2005 10:29:44 AM

We have been told today is the day the exhibition of hoffscheister's Turkmen piece opened and, even though we are sure there are some excellent and wonderful examples on view, we are also even more positive hoffscheister's still the same creepy selfish con artist we once had the misfortune of helping.

RK met hoffscheister in 1983 and at that time his collection was not very outstanding, nor did he know much about Turkmen weavings beyond what he had read or been told by other more experienced collectors and dealers.

In fact, after getting to know him much better (we spent quite a bit of time together over the next 5 or 6 years) he convinced me my initial impressions about his rug expertise was correct.

At that time and until we parted company, which was my doing, in 1990 the best pieces in hoffscheister's collection, besides the marvelous Tekke Torba (Plate 25) and the Tent Band (Plate 35)that are illustrated in "Turkmen Rugs from Franconia" were the two Beshir Chuvals illustrated in "Tent Bag - Tent Band" (Plates 32 and 31).

Those chuvals were purchased from the Simon Crosby Collection (more about him and his collection later), who also was the co-author and publisher of "Turkmen Rugs in Franconia). In reality, even though hoffscheister is listed as the author of that book, it was Crosby's project from the get go.

Crosby, unlike hoffscheister, is a modest man who has a tremendous amount of personal charm but more importantly a high sense of personal integrity and respect for others. Also Crosby’s knowledge of Turkmen rugs eclipsed hoffscheister’s by light years.

Regardless of the fact hoffscheister is listed as the author of that book, and Crosby's contribution to the book was memorialized with the following epitaph "edited with notes by A.S.B. Crosby", actually Crosby wrote most of the text, did all the publishing work and even helped hoffscheister write the contributions credited to him.

Reading the notes each of them wrote can not help but convince any astute reader of Crosby's lead and hoffscheister's follower positions.

But it is what Crosby wrote in the introduction to the part of the book picturing the hoffscheister pieces that is most telling:
"It has been interesting to watch the Hoffmeister collection grow in size and quality. In most collections growth and pruning take place at the same time, here a little pruning has been needed."

This is a rather genteel way of saying what we have been a bit more forthright in spelling out -- hoffscheister did know very much about what he was buying.

We will continue to profile hoffscheister, who has become one of the highest profile German collectors, and in doing so will prove our assertions beyond a shadow of doubt.

This effort will also reveal how hoffscheister thinks nothing of taking credit for ideas and theories conceived and developed by others, which is in our estimation the worst and lowest type of thievery.

So stay tuned here for more of the hoffscheister story.

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