IDFA & de Brakke Grond present:

Berlin / Het Zuidelijk Toneel - True Copy

On May 6 1994 the gendarmes break into Geert Jan Jansen’s French country estate, where they find more than 1600 works by the likes of Picasso, Dali, Appel, Matisse and Hockney. Striking detail: most of them have actually been painted by the Dutchman. For more than twenty years, Geert has managed to fool the art world, so convincingly so that Picasso and Appel themselves unwittingly provided certificates of authenticity for his creations.

After BERLIN’s Perhaps All The Dragons (in which Geert Jan makes his first appearance as one of the thirty story tellers) True Copy puts him centre stage. Over the years, and in the shadow of the masters, he has been perfecting his skill. Geert Jan’s work and life is a constant balancing act on the tightrope between fiction and reality, in the permanent hope of not tumbling down. He is a perfect protagonist, whose story far exceeds the realm of the personal.

In this new component of the Horror Vacui series, BERLIN puts Geert Jan himself on stage. The internal cogwheels that keep this complex man ticking act as a manual for laying bare – amongst other things – the hypocrisy inside the art world. What does truthfulness really mean? And isn’t it much more refreshing to go along with a brilliantly packaged lie?




Jury report TheaterFestival 2019 

The performance was selected for The Theater Festival 2019. From the jury report: "One of the most surprising performances of the year comes from the BERLIN theater group. [..] True Copy [is] much more than interesting documentary theater. BERLIN uses Jansen's story for a smart, witty and meticulously elaborated reflection on real and fake, about reality and fiction, about distrust and belief. True Copy [plays] an exciting game with the audience at a performance level: to what extent can we believe everything Jansen is telling here, or are we being set up by BERLIN? [..] This performance has been consistently thought out, to the very limit!"

In de pers

NRC | ★★★★★

“In True Copy, BERLIN makes magnificent use of the reality of Dutch art forger Geert Jan Jansen.”


“As Jansen said, ‘Sometimes it’s just delightful to be deceived."


"Armed with cameras, interview techniques, editing tables and actors, BERLIN portrays reality like a painter used to do: with a bit more color, lively angles of incidence and a brush setting that betrays a critical undertone."

Concept en regie BERLIN [Bart Baele en Yves Degryse]
Met Geert Jan Jansen
Assistent Geert Jan Jansen Luk Sponselee
Camera BERLIN, Geert De Vleesschauwer, Jessica Ridderhof en Dirk Bosmans
Montage BERLIN, Geert De Vleesschauwer en Fien Leysen
Compositie muziek en mixing Peter Van Laerhoven
Live mixing Arnold Bastiaanse of Hans De Prins
Piano Govaart Haché
Cello Katelijn Van Kerckhoven
Geluidsopname Bas De Caluwé en Maarten Moesen
Scenografie Manu Siebens, Ina Peeters en BERLIN
Lichtontwerp Barbara De Wit
Technische coördinatie Manu Siebens en Geert De Vleesschauwer
Technische assistentie Rex Tee
Trailers & teasers Fien Leysen en BERLIN
Productieleiding Celeste Driesen en Jessica Ridderhof
Productie BERLIN
Zakelijke leiding Kurt Lannoye
Administratie Jane Seynaeve
Spreiding Eveline Martens
Communicatie Sam Loncke
Met dank aan Saskia Verreycken, Diana Boro, Geert Jan Jansen voor zijn medewerking aan voorbereidingen, repetities en voorstellingenreeks
Coproducenten deSingel international kunstcampus [Antwerpen, BE], le CENTQUATRE-PARIS [FR], Het Zuidelijk Toneel [Tilburg, NL], Brighton Festival [VK], C-TAKT [Limburg, BE], Theaterfestival Boulevard [Den Bosch, NL], PACT Zollverein [Essen, DE] Met de steun van de Vlaamse Overheid, Tax Shelter van de Belgische Federale Overheid (Podiumfonds) BERLIN is creative associate bij deSingel international kunstcampus [Antwerpen, BE] en artiste associé bij le CENTQUATRE-PARIS [FR]