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Displaying items by tag: spoliation advisory panel

A Nazi-era restitution claim for a Renoir landscape at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery has been rejected. The Spoliation Advisory Panel recommended in a report that The Coast at Cagnes, Sea, Mountains (around 1910) should not be returned to the heirs of Jakob and Rosa Oppenheimer because there is insufficient evidence that it had been the subject of a Nazi forced sale in Berlin. The Oppenheimers, a German Jewish couple, had fled to France in 1933. Jakob died in an internment camp in 1941 and Rosa was murdered in Auschwitz two years later.

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Tate trustees have temporarily reversed their decision to restitute a Constable seascape to a Nazi-era spoliation claimant. Last year the UK’s Spoliation Advisory Panel recommended that the picture should be returned to the heirs of its pre-war Hungarian owner.

A Tate spokeswoman told "The Art Newspaper": “New information has come to light on the history of the painting "Beaching a Boat, Brighton," 1924, by John Constable in Tate’s collection. This was reviewed by Tate. The Tate trustees have now approached the [DCMS] Secretary of State to invite the Spoliation Advisory Panel to review the new information. We cannot comment further at this stage.”

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The Tate Gallery in London has agreed to return John Constable’s “Beaching a Boat, Brighton” to the heirs of a Jewish Hungarian art collector. The painting, which is listed on the University of Oxford’s looted art registry, was stolen from Baron Ferenc Hatvany while he was in hiding during World War II. Documents show that Hatvany acquired the Constable painting in 1908 at an auction in Paris.

The Tate received “Beaching a Boat, Brighton” in 1986 from a donor identified as Mrs. P.M. Rainsford, who had acquired the work in 1962. After the Tate received the painting, it failed to make its complete provenance public. Two years ago, Hatvany’s heirs learned that the Constable painting was in the Tate’s collection and in 2013, they formally submitted a claim to the Spoliation Advisory Panel, which was established by the British government to settle looting claims on artworks in public collections. The panel criticized the Tate for failing to thoroughly investigate the painting’s provenance.

The Tate released a statement saying that it was “grateful for the care with which the Panel has examined the evidence and is pleased to follow the conclusions of the report...Tate will therefore recommend to its Trustees, when they next meet in May, that the work be returned to the claimants.”


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