Le New York Times : Il a perdu un Courbet en fuyant les nazis. Ses héritiers le récupèrent.

March 28, 2023, by Julia Jacobs – excerpt.

Gustave Courbet, La Ronde Enfantine, 1862. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons (Courtesy of Art UK/the Fitzwilliam Museum)

“Shortly before the Nazi occupation of France in 1940, a Jewish engineer from a prominent family fled his Paris home with his mother, abandoning their apartment in the city’s affluent 16th arrondissement.”

“Among the possessions they left behind was a 19th-century painting of a lush forest scene, with children playing under a canopy of trees. As the Nazis took over, the artwork — by Gustave Courbet, the French realist painter — was carried off and reserved for the collection of a top Nazi official.”

“This is a deliberate seizure by the German authorities from a Jewish citizen of France with the diversion of the work of art to Nazi leaders,” the United Kingdom’s Spoliation Advisory Panel wrote in its decision. “We are satisfied that the heirs of the owner of the painting have a strong claim to restitution.”

“The claim was brought to the panel in 2021 by the Mondex Corporation, a Toronto-based company that assists heirs who are seeking restitutions.”

“According to the company’s research, after the painting was looted it was transferred to the Jeu de Paume, a Paris museum that the Germans turned into a depository for their looted art. There, it was inventoried with the title “Waldlandschaft,” which translates from German into “forest landscape.” A handwritten note with the painting indicated it had been intended for the collection of Hermann Göring, a Nazi official who was convicted of war crimes at the Nuremberg trials.”

“James Palmer, the founder of the Mondex Corporation, called the British government and the Fitzwilliam Museum “exemplary in their proactive, respectful and moral treatment of this restitution claim.”

This is an excerpt from this New York Times article. Full article through this link: