October 29, 2013

Dutch museums own some 139 contentious artworks

Filed under: Art by Orangemaster @ 1:57 pm

According to years of research carried out by the Netherlands Museums Association on the origins of artworks, some 139 pieces of art acquired by Dutch museums between 1933 and 1945 (during the Nazi regime) are suspected of being stolen, confiscated or were sold to them by force. Some 41 museums have such artworks in their collections, many of which were owned by Jews.

The research, started in 2009, had as a goal of establishing what the extent was of the possession of contentious paintings after the end of WWII. Some 162 Dutch museums collaborated with researchers in order to help return artworks to their rightful owners and/or their heirs. A special website will go live at 4 pm has now gone live on Tuesday, 29 October (CET) for everyone to peruse and maybe even help.

The museum with the most ‘stolen’ artworks is the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag (The Hague Municipal Museum), followed by Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam Museum and Stedelijk Museum.

(Link: www.volkskrant.nl, www.museumvereniging.nl, (Illustration: Charing Cross Bridge by Claude Monet. Source: politie.nl)

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August 20, 2013

Sotheby’s knowingly sells stolen Dutch work

Filed under: Art by Orangemaster @ 3:40 pm

A work by Dutch artist Jan Schoonhoven stolen from the Museum van Bommel van Dam in Venlo last March was auctioned off by London auction house Sotheby’s in what the Dutch media has called the ‘gaffe of the century’.

Sotheby’s auctioned a white relief made from papier-maché and latex paint for close to 214, 000 euro despite a warning from the Art Loss Register, a London databank of stolen artwork.

And if that isn’t sloppy enough, the Sotheby’s catalogue had the work printed under a false name and the picture of the work was rotated 90 degrees. Two art traders, one British and one Dutch, recognised the stolen work, pointed it out, and only then did Sotheby’s decide to inform the police.

(Link: www.nieuws.nl)

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