Ohne neues Geld keine Forschung - No Research Without New Money
Der Bund 28 August 2015
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Ist das der Gurlitt-Effekt? - Is this the Gurlitt Effect?
Tagesanzeiger 27 August 2015
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The Orpheus Clock: The Search for My Family's Art Treasures Stolen by the Nazis, by Simon Goodman - book review: One man's quest to find looted heirlooms
The Independent 26 August 2015
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Interview with Simon Goodman, author of "The Orpheus Clock"
Plundered Art 25 August 2015
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Heads roll in Slovakia over sale of Bernini bust
The History Blog 25 August 2015
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Hitler's Art Thief: A Review of Susan Ronald's Book on Hildebrand Gurlitt and the Looting of Europe's Treasures (New York: St. Martin's Press, 2015)
Plundered Art 24 August 2015
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“Between Fairness and Justice for Successors and Possessors”—an Upcoming Conference at the Oskar Reinhart Museum in Winterthur
Art Law Report 24 August 2015
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One of the world’s most respected curators vanished from the art world. Now she wants to tell her story.
Washington Post 22 August 2015
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Long-Lost Nazi Treasure Train Found in Poland May Contain Looted Art
Artnet 21 August 2015
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Umstrittene Leihgabe: Kunsthaus Zürich unter Raubkunstverdacht - Controversial Loans: The Kunsthaus Zurich is under suspicion
SRF 21 August 2015
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Altlasten im Neubau - Contamination in the new building
Tagesanzeiger 21 August 2015
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German Museum Restitutes Nazi-Looted Ernst Ferdinand Oehme Works to Jewish Heirs
Artnet 21 August 2015
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Staatsgalerie Stuttgart Restitutes Wertinger Painting to Rosenbaum and Rosenberg Heirs, Citing Importance of Blocked Accounts That Also Support Guelph Treasure Claim
Art Law Report 20 August 2015
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Killed by Hitler for a silver clock: How Simon Goodman's family history was plundered by Nazi antique looters
Daily Mail 20 August 2015
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Family to be compensated for Burrell Collection Nazi Loot
Museums Journal 18 August 2015
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Chandelier in Nicola Sturgeon's official residence 'was looted by Nazis during Second World War'
The Independent 16 August 2015
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New Pressure On Poland For Property Restitution
The Jewish Week 12 August 2015
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Glasgow to pay compensation to family whose Burrell Collection art was lost to Nazis
Glasgow Herald 8 August 2015
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Geklaut und vertickt
Die Zeit 8 August 2015
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Update and thoughts on Gurlitt
Institute of Art and Law 6 August 2015
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Websites and Resources

Dutch Museums Provenance Research
Results of 'Museum Acquisitions from 1933' project showing 41 Dutch museums are in possession of at least 139 items with 'problematic' origins.
click to visit
Swiss Looted Art Portal
Opened in June 2013, this government-run site provides details of museums' provenance research, advice on making enquiries, research and claims and links to relevant databases and archives in Switzerland and beyond.
click to visit
WGA-Files - Akten der Wieder- gutmachungsämter von Berlin - Case Records of the Berlin Restitution Offices
Digitised restitution case records of the Berlin Restitution Offices held in the Landesarchiv Berlin, consisting of the record group B Rep 025, Wiedergutmachungsämter von Berlin, containing more than 800,000 files.
click to visit
European Sales Catalogues 1930-1945 Heidelberg University
3,000 digitised auction catalogues including both German-speaking countries and the countries of occupied Europe - Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland and Switzerland - and including every genre of cultural object, from paintings to tapestries to silver and books. Provides the entire texts of auction catalogues. Searchable by auction house, artist, work of art, etc.
click to visit
German Sales Catalogs 1930–1945 at the Getty
More than 2,000 German language sales catalogues published between 1930 and 1945 including more than 230,000 individual auction sales records for paintings, sculptures, and drawings only. Searchable by artist name and nationality, lot title, buyer or seller’s name, city in which the sale occurred, type of subject matter and other fields. Provides only individual lot details, and links to Heidelberg for the full catalogue.  
click to visit
Hermann Goering Collection
Contains 4,263 paintings, sculptures, furniture, tapestries and other art objects, purchased or acquired from confiscated property, many available for restitution today.
click to visit
International Research Portal for Records Related to Nazi-Era Cultural Property
The Portal provides for the first time digital access to millions of cultural property records from the National Archives of the US, the UK, Germany, Belgium, Ukraine, France and other archival sources.  
click to visit

Conferences and Events

Rudolf von Alt. „…genial, lebhaft, natürlich und wahr". Der Münchner Bestand und seine Provenienz (Rudolf von Alt "...brilliant, lively, natural and true". The Munich collection and its provenance), Exhibition, Staatliche Graphische Sammlung Munich, 23 July -11 October 2015

Arising from a four year project to identify the provenance of some 617 works, mostly by Rudolf von Alt but also 16 by Jakob von Alt, in the Munich collection. Many are from the Martin Bormann collection which acquired them from Viennese Jewish collections. Some have been identified as looted and will be restituted. For full details, click here.

Zwischen Fairness und Gerechtigkeit für Nachkommen und heutige Besitzer (Between Justice and Fairness for the Descendants and the Current Owners), Conference, Museum Oscar Reinhart, Wintherthur, 31 August 2015

On flight assets and losses due to persecution - how Switzerland views the distinction. For full details of the programme, click here.

Raubkunst - Kunstwerke im langen Schatten der Vergangenheit - Looted Art - Artworks in the Long Shadows of the Past, Conference, Evangelische Akademie Tutzing, Germany, 25-27 September 2015

Organised by the Protestant Academy of Tutzing, the conference will explore issues in Germany of provenance research, the art market, how museums deal with their difficult history, the legal rights of claimants and policies of compensation and restitution. Participants include Winfried Bausback, Bavarian Minister of Justice,and Jutta Limbach, head of the German Advisory Commission. For full details, click here.

Plundered - But By Whom? Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia and Occupied Europe in the Light of the Nazi-Art Looting, Conference, Prague, 21-22 October 2015

6th international conference on the confiscation, thefts and transfers of works of art as a result of Nazi rule over Czechoslovakia and Europe during the Second World War and in the post-war period organized by the Documentation Centre for Property Transfers of Cultural Assets of WWII Victims. For full details, click here.


The Orpheus Clock: The Search for My Family’s Art Treasures Stolen by the Nazis
August 2015
Simon Goodman. With the help of his family, Simon initiated the first Nazi looting case to be settled in the United States. They also brought about the first major restitution in The Netherlands since the post-war era. Through painstaking detective work across two continents, Simon Goodman has been able to prove that many other works belonged to his grandparents, Fritz and Louise Gutmann, and successfully secure their return.
read more
Witnessing the Robbing of the Jews A Photographic Album, Paris, 1940-1944
August 2015
Sarah Gensburger. The book tells how the vast enterprise of plunder was implemented in the streets of Paris by analyzing images from an album of photographs found in the Federal Archives of Koblenz, brought from Paris in 1945 and catalogued by the staff of the Munich Central Collecting Point. Beyond bearing witness to the petty acts of larceny, these images provide crucial information on how the Germans saw their work.
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Aviso 2015 Raubkunst und Restitution at the Bayerische Staatsgemälde-sammlungen
July 2015
Bernhard Maaz, Alfred Grimm, Meike Hopp, Stephan Klingen, Andreas Strobl, Astrid Pellengahr, Robert Bierschneider. To read the 2015 report on research and restitution at the Bavarian State Paintings Collections Munich, click here.
read more
A Critical Assessment of US Intelligence's Investigation of Nazi Art Looting
April 2015
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Prisoners of War: Nazi-Era Looted Art and the Need for Reform in the United States
March 2015
Jessica Schubert.
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Nazi-Looted Art from East and West in East Prussia: Initial Findings on the Erich Koch Collection
February 2015
Patricia Kennedy Grimsted.
read more
Artists Under Hitler: Collaboration and Survival in Nazi Germany
January 2015
Jonathan Petropoulos.
read more
L'Impossible Réparation
January 2015
Jean-Marc Dreyfus. A history of French negotiations with Germany between 1944 and 2001 for reparations for deportations, spoliation, war crimes and seized bank accounts.
read more
Fair and Just Solutions? Alternatives to Litigation in Nazi-Looted Art Disputes: Status Quo and New Developments
December 2014
Editor Evelien Campfens.
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Forgotten Trials of the Holocaust
November 2014
Michael J. Bazyler and Frank M. Turkheimer. Ten “forgotten trials” of the Holocaust, selected from the many Nazi trials that have taken place over the course of the last seven decades.
read more
Die Praxis des Sammelns. Personen und Institutionen im Fokus der Provenienzforschung
November 2014
Eva Blimlinger and Heinz Schödl (ed).
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Museums and Restitution, New Practices, New Approaches
September 2014
Edited by Louise Tythacott, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, UK, and Kostas Arvanitis, University of Manchester, UK.
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Holocaust-Era Looted Art: A Current World-Wide Overview
September 2014
Dr Wesley A. Fisher and Dr Ruth Weinberger. Report by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany and World Jewish Restitution Organization
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Provenance Research in American Institutions
August 2014
Jane C. Milosch, Lynn H. Nicholas and Megan M. Fontanella (guest editors). A series of essays by American experts, including Nancy Yeide, Christian Huemer and Laurie Stein. 
read more
NS-Raubkunst auf der Spur: Provenienzforschung an der Bayerischen Staatsbibliothek
July 2014
Susanne Wanninger and Dr Stephan Kellner. A review of provenance research conducted at the Bayerischen Staatsbibliothek (Bavarian State Library) since 2003.
read more

Welcome to

This site contains two fully searchable databases.

The Information Database contains information and documentation from forty nine countries, including laws and policies, reports and publications, archival records and resources, current cases and relevant websites.

The Object Database contains details of over 25,000 objects of all kinds – paintings, drawings, antiquities, Judaica, etc – looted, missing and/or identified from over fifteen countries.

All images on the site are published under fair use conditions for the purpose of criticism and research.

For a list of Essential Website Links, showing all key research sites and resources,click here.

For details of international resources, see below, Online Resources and Case News.

For the Gurlitt collection at the Kunstmuseum Bern, click here. For the full range of developments on the Gurlitt case, click here. For all news stories, see the News Archive.  For all other materials, including ALIU reports, etc, search 'Gurlitt'. 

To subscribe to our looted art newsletter, click here.


Charles Goldstein 1937-2015

Herrick Feinstein, the New York law firm where Charles Goldstein was a Senior Counsel, write:

July 30, 2015 – it is with great sadness that we share the loss of our friend and colleague, Charles Goldstein.

Charles was remarkable in many ways. After becoming New York's premier real estate attorney from the 1960s through the 90s (see the New York Times article "Charles Goldstein: Real Estate Attorney to the Powerful"), he embarked on a completely new career in art law. 

In doing so, he became an international leader in the world-wide efforts to recover Nazi-looted art and return it to the families of the original owners after Ronald Lauder asked him to develop and lead the Commission for Art Recovery ("CAR"). In that capacity, he was responsible for all governmental affairs and litigation arising out of CAR's activities in Europe and the United States, and supervised claims, negotiations and litigation in many countries around the world.

Charles was also a frequent lecturer at art restitution seminars in the U.S. and Europe, and the author of numerous articles on the subject. Lawyers, government officials, experts, journalists and others throughout the world regularly sought his sage advice on art restitution matters.

It was a true inspiration for many of us to work so closely with Charles.

Von Alt Catalogue: The Munich Collection and Its Provenance

Edited by Dr Andreas Strobl of the Staatliche Graphische Sammlung in Munich and published by Deutscher Kunstverlag, the catalogue (and associated exhibition) arises from a four year project to identify the provenance of some 617 works, mostly by Rudolf von Alt but also 16 by Jakob von Alt, and many from the Martin Bormann collection which acquired them from Viennese Jewish collections ( The catalogue contains references to and research into von Alt works associated with names of Viennese collectors, ranging from Blauhorn to Bloch-Bauer, Heissfeld to Klinger, Mautner to Zuckerkandl. The catalogue is widely available for purchase.

Lawyer Olaf Ossmann representing the heirs of Richard Semmel sends open letter to the Dutch Minister of Culture

He seeks a revision of the regulations by which the Dutch Restitutions Committee makes its decisions and asks for an assurance of an independent assessment of the Semmel claim.

On 25 April 2013 the Dutch Restitutions Committee handed down a binding decision that a 'Madonna and Child with Wild Roses' painting by Jan van Scorel now in the Centraal Museum Utrecht would not be returned to the heirs of Richard Semmel, its rightful owner, despite the Committee finding that the sale of the painting by Semmel was involuntary. Utilitisng new regulations, the Committee found that the interest of the Museum in keeping the painting it acquired in 1958 should outweight the rights of the heirs to its restitution. No compensation was offered.

The heirs subsequently took the case to the Court of Utrecht which ruled in January 2015 that the decision was invalid and that the procedures of the Committee did not provide equality for both parties. Prior to the court's ruling, the Dutch Culture Minister Mrs Bussemaker suggested to the claimants that they seek alternative dispute resolution. However, the museum refused and suggested instead that they return to the Restitutions Committee for another decision, saying they had no reason to question its procedures.
Mr Ossmann writes that the heirs' second attempt to find a new impartial ruling was through Parliament which proposed to the Minister that an ad hoc committe be set up for the purpose. The Minister asked the Chair of the Restitutions Committee to advise and he said that wa unnecessary and that the Restittuions Committee itself could re-hear the case. Despite the court having specifically ruled that the procecures and criteria of the Committee explicitly favoured the current possessor of a claimed painting, the Minister nonetheless accepted the Chair's proposal, which further ruptured the required independence between government and the Committee.
Mr Ossmann's open letter calls upon the Minister to revise the regulations which the court criticised as not providing impartial justice. He writes that it is clear that museums will not willingly give up artworks even when there is a valid claim for them.and the Committee's regulations make that the most likely outcome of any claim. Mr Ossmann further calls upon the Minister to say how the Committee could provide a different ruling given that the criteria have not changed, and seeks the provision of a fair and speedy solution for the claimants by the establishment of an ad-hoc committee which can guarantee a just, independent and impartial decision..   

To read the letter, click here.

25 June 2015: WJRO issues 'Report concerning current approaches of United States museum to Holocaust-era art claims'

Prominent U.S. museums have evaded the restitution of Nazi-looted artworks to their rightful owners and heirs by refusing to resolve claims on their facts and merits and by asserting technical defenses, such as statutes of limitations, according to a new World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) report, authored with the pro-bono assistance of the American law firm Dickstein Shapiro LLP. The report calls for three recommendations to promote merit-based resolutions of Holocaust-era claims against U.S. museums. 
These recommendations include encouraging U.S. museums to live up to the spirit of the Washington Conference Principles, Terezin Declaration and the Guidelines of the American Alliance of Museums (AAM); having the AAM ensure compliance of its member museums by withholding accreditation; and enacting legislation to extend statutes of limitations for Holocaust-era restitution claims.
American museums named in the report as improperly defending against Nazi-looted art claims include the Toledo Museum of Art, the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art at the University of Oklahoma. “Museums are central to a civilized society,” said Gideon Taylor, WJRO chair of operations. “The American museum community, while understandably an advocate for artwork to remain in public hands, must follow through on its prior commitments not to taint collections with art stolen during the Holocaust.”
To read the report, click here.

23 June 2015: Restitution of Adolph Menzel pastel to the heirs of Berlin publisher Rudolf Mosse (1843-1920)


Erna Felicia and Hans Lachmann-Mosse, Mosse’s daughter and son-in-law, were unlawfully deprived of the drawing, 'Lady with Red Blouse', shortly after the Nazi takeover in Germany in 1933. Oskar Reinhart purchased the pastel from the art dealer Fritz Nathan in Munich in 1934. He had been regularly in touch with Nathan since 1928 and later helped him escape to Switzerland in 1936. He paid 3,632 Swiss Francs, which was a customary price for high-quality drawings by Menzel at the time. In 1940, Oskar Reinhart gave the work to the foundation, which he had established to make his art collection available to the public.
Launched in 2012, the Mosse Art Restitution Project shed light on the circumstances that led to the bankruptcy of the Mosse publishing house as well as to the seizure of the collection and public auction of the objects in 1934 in Berlin. Mosse’s descendants had already left Germany. Due to these new insights, the foundation in its press release, writes that "the foundation board of the Oskar Reinhart Foundation contacted the heirs and offered to restitute the pastel, which had been expropriated from the family in 1934. Oskar Reinhart strictly avoided offers with unclear provenance in the 1930s. The foundation board is convinced that it acts in the interest of the founder by giving back a work that from today's perspective would not have been purchased by Reinhart if he had known about the exact circum-stances of the sale."

To read the full press release issued by the Foundation, click here. All missing works from the Mosse Collection are listed in the Object Database on this site. To review them, enter 'Mosse' into the Name box of the Provenance section on the Search page.

Jewish Heritage Foundation established to locate, recover, restore and return stolen Eastern European Judaica to its rightful owners

15 June 2015: Established in Boca Raton, Florida, the Foundation has identified some 113 Torah scrolls in Nizhny Novgorod in Russia and states that it is "the only organization that is dedicated to locating, recovering and restoring Judaica to communal and educational uses".
In its description of itself, the Foundation writes: "From 2011 to now, a small group of "regular" Jews from Florida came together with some of the world's leading experts in Holocaust education and museums and a group of Rabbis from Russia, Hungary, Austria, the Czech Republic, Cyprus and the United States. The timing was right. The Government officials in Russia were cooperative and recognized the importance of restoring the Judaica, which could be used to help strengthen Jewish communities in the own country and bring honor to their country.  The result was that The Foundation has successfully located, documented and started to restore 113 Torahs from the Regional Universal Scientific Library of Nizhny Novgorod, Russia."

The Foundation has identified looted Judaica in the following locations:

In Belarus - Torahs, Rare Books, Megilahs, Manuscripts & Silver: in the National Library of Belarus (NBB), the State Museum of History and Culture of Belarus in Minsk, the State Historical Archive, the Historical Museum of Mogileve, and in the Historical Museum of Vitebsk;
In Russia - Torahs, Rare Books, Megilahs, Religious Texts: in the Russian Ministry of Defense Central Archives, in the Special (Osoby) Archive (TsGOA, TsKhIDK), in the Russian State Military Archive & State Historical Museum (GIM), in the Regional Scientific Library In Nizhny Novgorod, in the Regional Library on the Volga.and in the Nizhny Novgorod Art Museum;
In Poland - Torahs, Books, Silver, Ark Curtains & Synagogue Items: in Warsaw’s National Museum, in the Krakow Historical Museum, in the National Musuem in Kielc, in the Historical Museum in Lodz and in the Regional museums in Lublin, Nowy Sacz, Tarnow, Bialoystok, Kazimierz Dolny, Rzeszow, Drohiczyn and Wlodawa;
In Romania - Torahs, Jewish Books and manuscripts;
In Ukraine - Torahs, Rare Books and Manuscripts: the National Vernadsky Library of Ukraine holds 150,000 books and manuscripts dating to the 16th Century

For further details, visit the Foundation's website at

4 June 2015: Ruling of Judge John Walter of California in the case of David Cassirer vs the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection Foundation

On 4 June Judge John Walter issued his ruling on the long-standing claim of the heirs of Lilly Cassirer to recover the Pissarro painting which she was forced to sell in 1939. The painting is now in the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, acquired in 1976 by Baron Thyssen-Bornemisza from a New York dealer. Judge Walter ruled that Spain had title to the painting but called on the Museum to follow international principles and 'do the right thing'. To read the ruling, click here.

Online Resources and Case News
Country-specific information is available on this site for 48 countries, from Albania to Yugoslavia, in the Information by Country section. Details of important, non country-specific, online resources are available in the International section of the site which contains several categories of information.  For example: 

Case News: provides details of claims and cases ruled on or settled outside the courts with copies of reports and rulings. Full details of a comprehensive range of cases can be found in the News Archive, which is fully searchable by name of family, artwork, museum, city, etc.

: provides details of claims and cases ruled on or being settled in court with copies of court filings and judgements.

Research Resources: provides details of family records, tracing services, art historical resources, texts of post-war reports, and books and publications.

Web Resources: provides details of various online databases of looted paintings, results of provenance research in countries around the world, archival records available online and other research materials.

Seeking Owners of Identified Looted Property: provides lists of names of individuals whose looted property has been identified in institutions in Germany and whose heirs are being sought. 

Other categories of information include Governmental Conferences and Hearings, Laws, Policies and Guidelines, Art Trade, and Press, Television, Radio and Film.  To explore all these sections, click here.

The site is regularly updated with new resources and developments.  To provide details of resources or cases to add to the site, please email

© website copyright Central Registry 2015