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View Diary: Overnight News Digest November 17 (38 comments)

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  •  Art (9+ / 0-)

    I'm pretty sure some of the pictures weren't stolen, but rather Hildebrand Gurlitt, his father, took advantage of the horrible situation created by the Nazis that forced many Jewish art patrons to part with their collections on the cheap in hope to escape Germany or the Nazis. Gurlitt, as I understand it, was the broker who facilitated the sales. The art market in Nazi Germany was depressed because of the significant number of high quality works flooding the market because of the sales made by desperate sellers.

    Anyway, I believe it isn't simply a cut-and-dried issue of art theft. Gurlitt, the son, may even be able to produce bills of sale for many of the works of art. That aside, I do wonder about his mental health and hope he gets any help he needs.

    •  That's the crux, to me (4+ / 0-)

      If art is found to have been "sold" under the more or less manipulated view of Nazi coercion, social unrest or outright thievery, this person's family tree was taking advantage of a relatively particular and extreme form of cultural/police pressure in their country's history, families of those who felt forced to release these artworks may have claims to stake in some of these works.

      In those cases, defending the original purchases becomes a sensitive balancing act of attempting to determine what was a fair transaction vs the sell-off of low-priced, high quality goods by unfairly (to say the least) oppressed people.

      Yeah, there's an antisocial element to this collector's personality which may complicate the objective assessment of these matters - he's apparently lived within a world of his "precious" ones a bit long.

      "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

      by wader on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:23:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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