Showing posts with label art theft. Show all posts
Showing posts with label art theft. Show all posts

Jun 22, 2021

Bruno Lohse Nazi Art Looter Transcription of ALIU Detailed Interrogation Report NARA RG239 DIR 6


The text below is a transcription of a document in the National Archives concerning Nazi art looting that was declassified in 1975. It concerns the notorious Nazi art looter, Bruno Lohse. This Detailed Interrogation Report was written by Monuments Man and OSS Art Looting Investigation Unit member James S. Plaut in 1945. It detailed the interrogation of Nazi art looter Bruno Lohse conducted from June 15, 1945 to August 15, 1945.


NARA : copy of transcription D. I. R. # 6 - Bruno Lohse, 1945-1946 



A photocopy of the Detailed Interrogation Report Number 6 can be downloaded here: Download PDF


The text, transcribed in a digital searchable text, is below

May 1, 2021

Names of persecuted Austrian Jewish collectors



How to verify the provenance texts of artworks for names that might indicate a history of Nazi looting or persecution?

There are many potential sources and lists.

In this post, we look an official Austrian report from 2008 that contains names of Austrian Jewish collectors whose art collections were plundered by the Nazis.

Dec 31, 2020

Portraits of Murder and Plunder


Amalie Zuckerkandl was at the height of her beauty when Gustav Klimt begin this (unfinished) portrait of her in 1917-8. A member of the Viennese Zuckerkandl family, Amalie was murdered in the Holocaust along with her daughter Nora Stiansy because they were Jewish, and her portrait was stolen by Nazis.



Serena (Szeréna) Lederer was the model for this beautiful portrait by Gustav Klimt. Her family, which was Jewish, was plundered by the Nazis. Serena Lederer died in 1943 as a refugee from Nazism. 



This magnificent portrait by Klimt depicts the Jewish Austrian intellectual and feminist Adele Bloch-Bauer. Commissioned by her husband, Ferdinand Bloch-Bauer, a Jewish banker and sugar producer, the painting was looted by the Nazis in 1941, along with numerous other artworks. 


Irène Cahen d'Anvers was eight years old when her father, the French Jewish banker Louis Cahen d'Anvers, commissioned this lovely portrait from Pierre-Auguste Renoir in 1880.  During World War II, the Nazis stole the portrait and murdered Irène's daughter, Béatrice, her ex-son-in-law and their two children because of their Jewish ancestry.



The painter Eduard Einschlag was murdered in the Treblinka concentration camp in 1942, and his estate was confiscated. He painted this self portrait in 1930.


Renoir painted this portrait of the Austrian actress Tilla Durieux (Ottilie Godeffroy, 1880–1971) in 1914 when she was married to the art dealer Paul Cassirer. After Cassirer's suicide she married Ludwig Katzenellenbogen who was deported and murdered in the Nazi Sachsenhausen concentration camp in 1944 because Jewish.


Selfportrait by the German Jewish painter Ernst Oppler, showing himself as an art collector.  Ernest Oppler died in 1929, thus escaping the Holocaust, but many members if his family were plundered and persecuted by the Nazis; his brother, the doctor Berthold Oppler, committed suicide in detention on 6 January 1943 to avoid imminent deportation to a Nazi death camp.


The German Jewish painter Charlotte Salomon looks warily at the viewer in this self-portrait from 1940; her family fled Germany for France after Kristallnacht but, five months pregnant, she was captured and murdered in Auschwitz in 1943. 

This brooding self-portrait was painted by the German Jewish artist Felix Nussbaum who died in Auschwitz in 1944.


Getrud Loew was the daughter of Gustav Klimt's doctor, Anton Loew. She was 19 years old when this portait was painted (see full length here). She managed to escape Nazi Vienna in 1939,  under her widowed name Gertha Felsöványi.  



"Pieces with titles that referenced their Jewish origins, were completely changed. For example, The Portrait of Margaret Stonborough Wittgenstein (a Jew) became Damenbildnis in Weiss (Portrait of a lady in white)." - (Morowitz, Laura. “‘Heil the Hero Klimt!’: Nazi Aesthetics in Vienna and the 1943 Gustav Klimt Retrospective.” Oxford University Press 39, no. 1 (2016): 122-23. cited by Gabrielle Knight in Honors Thesis)





Little is known about Walburga "Wally" Neuzil, the blue-eyed model painted by Egon Schiele in 1912. The portrait was stolen by a Nazi art dealer from the collection of Jewish collector Lea Bondi Jaray when her gallery was Aryanized by Nazis in 1939 and she was forced to flee Vienna as a Jew. 





For more reading, see:

Un tableau de Klimt volé par les nazis n'a jamais été restitué à son propriétaire

‘Heil the Hero Klimt!’: Nazi Aesthetics in Vienna and the 1943 Gustav Klimt Retrospective

Leipzig gibt jüdischer Familie ein Stück Geschichte zurück

A Blood-Stained Renoir on Exhibit in Paris

Leipzig Mayor Hand Delivers Nazi-era Art to Painter's Heirs 

Case Review: Cassirer v. Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection Foundation

Holocaust Victim Assets Litigation Case No. CV96-4849

Ein Haus wie ein Museum

Die Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz gibt Kunstwerke aus der Sammlung des von den Nationalsozialisten verfolgten und ermordeten Max Silberberg zurück.

Münchner Kunstfund Bewusst verschleiert

A Tale of Two Portraits, by Rudolf Beran

Raubkunstverdacht: Der Kandinsky-Konflikt

Der Schandfleck

Bank's Kandinsky painting was looted by Nazis, says family





Jul 21, 2020

Analysis Art Provenances: Red Flag Name Benno Geiger

https://www.fold3.com/image/270109050

"Geiger, Benno. Venice, Botto Nuevo. Art historian-dealer of Baltic origin. Friend of Kieslinger and acted as guide for Muehlmann and Kieslinger during their trips to Italy in 1942 and 1943. Involved in irregular art purchases ordered by Muehlmann and frequently in touch with Hofer.

Asta, Ferruccio. Ascona, Switzerland-Milan, via Andegari. Milan art dealer now living in Switzerland as a refugee. Reported to have worked actively with Geiger and suspected of trafficking in loot."
Below are provenances that mention Geiger: