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Dutch City Settles on Looted Jan Steen Painting "The Marriage of Tobias and Sarah"
A painting titled "The Marriage of Tobias and Sarah" by Jan Steen is seen. Lawyers for Marei von Saher, the U.S. heir of Jewish art dealer Jacques Goudstikker, who lost many paintings while fleeing the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands, say she has settled with The Hague municipality on a valuable work by Jan Steen. The lawyers say she will receive euro 1 million ($1.4 million) and donate her share in the painting "The Marriage of Tobias and Sarah" to a Hague museum. City spokeswoman Esther Andoetoe confirmed the settlement on Monday, Aug. 15, 2011. AP Photo/Museum Bredius.
AMSTERDAM (AP).- Lawyers for the U.S. heir of a Jewish art dealer who lost many paintings while fleeing the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands say she has settled with The Hague municipality on a valuable work by Jan Steen.

The lawyers say Marei von Saher will receive euro1 million ($1.4 million) and donate her share in the painting "The Marriage of Tobias and Sarah" to a Hague museum.

The piece has an unusual history: it was cut in two before the war and painstakingly restored in the 1990s — before von Saher's claim to the larger part was established by the Dutch state in 2006.

The painting will be displayed at the Museum Bredius in memory of von Saher's father-in-law, Jacques Goudstikker.

City spokeswoman Esther Andoetoe confirmed the settlement Monday.

Bredius never saw the painting "the wedding night of Tobias and Sarah" as it is now in the Bredius Museum. He was owner of the right-hand part, the other part was in the 'Centraal Museum' in Utrecht. In 1996 two restorers from the Municipal Museum in The Hague, Wietse van Noort en Jan Venema, cleaned and restored the painting and put them back together again.

Initial reconstruction took place in the sixties. On the left part, two wingtips and the sheath of a dagger appeared after a restoration. This proved that the two parts had actually been one painting once. Now it also became clear that the green-clad figure is the arch-angel Rafaël who is rendering the evil spirit harmless with a burnt offering. In 1993 the art historian Albert Blankert proposes to restore the two pieces to one whole again. They decide to execute the plan at the restoration workshop of the Municipal Museum.


Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.



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August 16, 2011

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