Showing posts with label Sotheby's. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sotheby's. Show all posts

May 30, 2024

Erasing Jewish collectors' names from Nazi looted art: Alfred Weinberger

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

 In 2009, Sotheby's put up for sale this Renoir entitled DEUX FEMMES DANS UN JARDIN with the following provenance.


Soutro Gallery, London
Sale: Christie's, London, June 24, 1997, lot 284
Private Collection (sold: Sotheby's, New York, November 3, 2005, lot 114)
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

No mention of Alfred Weinberger, who had owned the Renoir until a Nazi looting organization seized it in Paris on December 4, 1941.

The above is one of the most typical provenance types that conceals Nazi-looted art. 

May 26, 2024

Phoenix Ancient Art: selected provenances

detail of Marble female figure Cycladicca. 3200–2700 BC (on loan to the Met)

 Phoenix Ancient Art has been in the news quite a bit lately, and art crime experts are advising museums to verify their collections.

Chasing Aphrodite

Dec 14, 2022

Art Provenance Texts as Data: Restitution Histories in Auction Catalogs

Adolph Menzel, restituted to the heirs of Walter Westfeld

When Nazi-looted artworks are restituted, families are often obliged to sell at least some of the artworks. For this they turn to auction houses. As a result, the provenances published by auction houses may provide valuable insights into the art market networks that handled the looted art until the time of restitution

Below is a selection of several provenances published online by Sotheby's. Some of the provenance texts indicate that artworks put up for auction had previously been restituted to the families of persecuted collectors. 

For the artworks that have been restituted, the provenances - before the restitution - offer clues to how the resale market for Nazi-looted art worked. Through which hands did the artworks pass? Do any names recur?