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Displaying items by tag: nazi loot

It’s hard to imagine anyone wanting to fight the return of artwork stolen from Jews during the Holocaust, even museum academics who have an interest in keeping the works in their collections. Not only does there seem to be a moral imperative to right these nearly century-old wrongs. On the face of it, such battles are simply bad public relations.

Yet the past decade has seen a series of high-profile, protracted restitution battles across the U.S. and Europe. The case of the so-called Gurlitt hoard, wherein more than 1,200 pieces of (mostly) stolen art was discovered in a Munich apartment in 2012, has yet to be fully resolved.

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Jewish World Congress president Ronald Lauder has publicly threatened the Kunstmuseum Bern with an "avalanche" of lawsuits if the institution accepts the collection of approximately 1,300 artworks bequeathed to it by the late Cornelius Gurlitt - stated in an article published by German weekly "Der Spiegel." The museum is currently still in the process of making this delicate decision - whether or not to accept the collection - which includes works by Henri Matisse, Max Liebermann, Otto Dix, and Marc Chagall, among others famous artists.

Gurlitt died on May 6th of this year, leaving the entire collection to the Swiss museum - but nearly 600 works from the collection are suspected to be of questionable provenance, possibly Nazi loot.

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Thought the Gurlitt saga had finally come to an end? Think again. Officials assigned to the task force charged with proofing the 1300 some works found in now-deceased collector, Cornelius Gurlitt’s Munich apartment announced on Thursday in Berlin that yet more work had recently been discovered.

Discovered three months after Gurlitt died after a long illness and several months in the spotlight thanks to his collection of potential Nazi loot, the new works include two sculptures, which experts suggest could be by Auguste Rodin and Edgar Degas.

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