The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Saturday, July 26, 2014


Germany, heir reach accord on Nazi-looted art stash; Gurlitt will likely get back many paintings
The website www.gurlitt.info demonstrates the willingness of the 81-year-old and his lawyers for dialogue both with the public and possible claimants.

By: Deborah Cole

BERLIN (AFP).- The heir of a Nazi-era art dealer said Monday he had struck an accord with the German government setting a one-year deadline on provenance research for his vast hoard of paintings.

The agreement more than two years after their shock discovery in a customs probe means that Cornelius Gurlitt, 81, will likely get back many of the hundreds of artworks that were seized by German authorities.

But the deal with the federal and Bavarian state governments will also speed up the search for rightful owners of the works, many of which are believed to have been looted from Jewish collectors under Adolf Hitler.

Gurlitt had stashed around 1,400 artworks in his Munich apartment including long-lost paintings by Picasso, Matisse and Chagall.

"Works on which provenance research cannot be completed by the task force within the year will be returned to Cornelius Gurlitt," the parties said in a joint statement, referring to a government body researching ownership claims.

"If restitution claims are made or could arise at the end of the year deadline, the works will remain held by a trust."

Gurlitt will also be able to appoint one expert to the task force to ensure his interests are represented, while the costs for the provenance research will be picked up by the state.

More than 200 paintings, sketches and sculptures discovered in a separate home of Gurlitt's in Salzburg, Austria including works by Monet, Manet, Cezanne and Gauguin are not covered by the German agreement.

A priceless Matisse
Gurlitt had already said last month that he was willing to cooperate with claimants to return artworks.

But he had yet to reach an accord with the German authorities, who had confiscated the Munich works in February 2012.

"The whole world has been watching to see what answer we find to these questions and this deal is a good answer," Bavarian Justice Minister Winfried Bausback said.

Federal Culture Minister Monika Gruetters was also satisfied with the accord, saying it "established the foundation for fair and just" resolutions of claim disputes.

Gurlitt's father Hildebrand acquired most of the paintings in the 1930s and 1940s, when he worked as an art dealer tasked by the Nazis with selling stolen works and avant-garde art the Hitler regime deemed "degenerate".

The remarkable finds in Cornelius Gurlitt's homes have touched off a series of claims by the heirs of Jews whose works were systematically plundered or extorted from them under the Third Reich.

Negotiations are underway with the descendants of prominent Paris art collector Paul Rosenberg on a claim to a priceless Matisse painting.

But earlier Monday, Gurlitt representatives said a second, rival claimant had come forward for the portrait called "Sitting Woman".

His lawyer Christoph Edel said he was thus "legally obliged" to review the demand or risk legal action "should the painting be given to the wrong person by accident".

"But there has been absolutely no change to our clearly stated position that the paintings in question will be returned," Edel said.

The Matisse, believed to have been painted in the mid-1920s, shows a stout, dark-haired woman in a floral dress sitting in a chair in a room with vibrant wall coverings.

Gurlitt's spokesman said the government-appointed task force for the artworks had also not yet determined the provenance of the Matisse but that his team aimed to resolve the issue as soon as possible.

He told AFP he could not reveal the identity of the new claimant or even his or her nationality.

A lawyer for Rosenberg, Christopher A. Marinello, expressed surprise that news of a rival demand had been released to the media while he had not received any documentation from the task force "regarding an alleged second claim".

"Therefore, we cannot comment on what information is being released to the media other than it is highly unusual for professional and responsible researchers to take this approach," he said.



© 1994-2014 Agence France-Presse



Today's News

April 8, 2014

Landmark exhibition opens in New York exploring the ancient kingdoms of Southeast Asia

Sotheby's to offer the most important selection of Oceanic art to appear on the market for the last thirty years

Getty Museum announces the return of a Byzantine illuminated New Testament to Greece

Germany, heir reach accord on Nazi-looted art stash; Gurlitt will likely get back many paintings

Poly Auction Hong Kong Spring Auctions: First day of Auctions reached a total of HK$600 million

Christie's London announces sale of an important private collection of works made by René Lalique

Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden online: Museums offer 45 panoramic tours

'World's oldest message in a bottle', tossed in sea 101 years ago, reaches granddaughter

Panorama of 19th century Jerusalem by Orientalist master Edwin Lord Weeks on offer at Bonhams

Sotheby's Geneva to present three exceptional diamonds at auction on 13 May

Artistic licence: Ghana's film posters win fans selling for hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars

Sotheby's to auction property from the celebrated collections of the Dukes of Northumberland

The Hutton-Mdivani necklace sets world auction record for any Jadeite at Sotheby's Hong Kong

iGavel Auctions announces an important sale of Asian, ancient & ethnographic works of art

Museum announces historical position for Chief Curator

Sotheby's Hong Kong Fine Chinese Paintings Spring Sale 2014 achieves US$50.5 million

Gun used on John Paul II exhibited at his birthplace

Sotheby's to offer a monumental sculpture formerly owned by Félix Fénéon & Jacques Kerchache

Christie's Hong Kong announces a selling exhibition of Asian 20th century and contemporary art

Morphy's April 26-27 auction presents iconic American advertising, from soft drinks and cars to tobacco

Oklahoma City Museum of Art Film Curator to step down

Cahiers d'Art announces the second edition of its legendary art revue featuring Rosemarie Trockel

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Archaeologists discover Roman 'free choice' cemetery in the 2,700-year-old ancient port of Rome

2.- Romanians must pay 18 million euros over Kunsthal Museum Rotterdam art heist

3.- Hello Kitty designer Yuko Yamaguchi defends cute character as cat turns 40 years old

4.- eBay and Sotheby's partner to bring world class art and collectibles to a global community

5.- Exhibition on Screen returns with new series of films bringing great art to big screens across the globe

6.- Marina Abramović reaches half way point of her '512 Hours' performance at the Serpentine Gallery

7.- The Phillips Collection in Washington introduces a uCurate app for curating on-the-go

8.- United States comic icon Archie Andrews dies saving openly gay character

9.- New feathered predatory fossil, unearthed in China, sheds light on dinosaur flight

10.- Exhibition at Thyssen Bornemisza Museum presents an analysis of the concept of the 'unfinished'



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Rmz. - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site