New York's Guggenheim to hand back Nazi-looted painting to heirs

NEW YORK (dpa)- New York's Guggenheim Museum is to hand over a painting by the German artist Ernst Ludwig Kirchner worth millions of dollars to the family of its former owner, a prominent Jewish art collector.
The 1915 expressionist painting "Artillerymen," which shows Russian prisoners of war naked under a shower, was in the possession of Alfred Flechtheim until he was driven to exile in 1933, eventually settling in London.

New York's Guggenheim
New York's Guggenheim
He handed it over to his niece but it fell into the hands of the art collector and Nazi party member Kurt Feldhaeusser after her suicide on the eve of her transportation to a concentration camp in 1942.
After Feldhaeusser's death in 1945, the painting eventually made its way to the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York before reaching the Guggenheim.
The painting is to be handed over to Flechtheim's great nephew, Michael Hulton, after an agreement was reached on Thursday.
"Overall, restitution is about recognition and paying respect to the suffering of the Nazi victims' families," Hulton said. "I am grateful to the Guggenheim Foundation for doing the right thing."
Guggenheim director Richard Armstrong said the institution regarded its responsibility to look into the provenance of its art works "with the greatest seriousness."
It is the second major painting to be returned to the Flechtheim heirs in recent weeks. Stockholm's Moderna Museet gave back an Oskar Kokoschka picture at the start of September.

Monday, October 8th 2018

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