When the Russian spy Rudolph Abel (1903 – 1971) was arrested in New York on June 21, 1957, the FBI found fifty oil paintings in his studio. Abel had used his work as an amateur artist and photographer as his cover. His favourite subject: lonely old men in the big city. For his book »Amateur« Fabian Reiman has conducted research in FBI archives to learn about the circumstances of the life of the artist spy. The pictures taken by the FBI of Abel’s studio and workspace show him as someone who was adept in priming canvas as well as making wiretaps. The book was published on occasion of the exhibition »Amateur und Überflieger« at Kunstverein Hannover in 2013.