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Return valuables lost in Nazi Germany to rightful heirs

Salted Rutma Photo: Rijksmuseum

Six priceless artefacts, estimated to be worth more than 3 million euros in total, will be returned from museums in Amsterdam and The Hague to the heirs of the German Jewish woman Emma badge.

at the first major symptom of A New Policy of Humanity and Goodwill As announced by former Culture Minister Ingrid van Engelshoven, the Dutch Reparations Commission recommended the return of six works deemed “involuntary sales” under the Nazi regime.

4 is salt cellar by 16th It was acquired by the Amsterdam City Council in 1960 and until recently was on display at the Rijksmuseum and Amsterdam Museum.

Other objects are goblet holders by 17th Purchased by The Hague City Council in 1937 and housed in The Hague Museum of Art, artist of the century Andries grill and ceramic plates.

These objects, a bronze sculpture attributed to Alessandro Vittoria, are in the same sale as Moses, were designated “looted art” and returned in 2018, although this decision took much longer. rice field.

Steven Schwab, one of Emma Badge’s heirs, told Dutch News he was happy with the verdict and was open to any remaining craft in Holland.

“We believe that the Advisory Committee has determined that these priceless items from Emma Badge’s collection were illegally taken away by the Nazi regime in 1937 and should be returned to her heirs. “I hope that the proper agreement can be reached between the Rijksmuseum and the Museum of Fine Arts Amsterdam so that the countless museum patrons will be able to see these beautiful works.” increase.”

Rutoma’s Salted Story

Rutma salt cellar at the Amsterdam Museum Photo S Boztas

Emma Badge

In two “binding opinions” released Thursday, the Restitution Commission said it was “plausible enough that her beneficiaries involuntarily lost their ownership after her death.” Advised the Dutch Council to return the work to Emma Budge’s heirs.

A wealthy Jewish resident of Hamburg with American citizenship, Emma Budge had a vast art collection. However, after her death in 1937, against her wishes, her work was auctioned at the ‘Aryanized’ Paul Graupher auction house in Berlin. Some were purchased directly by the city of The Hague and the rest ended up in the Amsterdam collection.

The Commission said that since Budge and her heirs belonged to a persecuted group and that the loss of property occurred during the Nazi regime, “the Commission will not allow loss of property unless proven otherwise.” It added that it was “plausible” that badge beneficiaries were not free to dispose of the proceeds of the sale due to anti-Semitic measures by the Nazis. rice field.

Lothar Fremy, a partner at the Berlin law firm Rechtsanwälte Rosbach & Fremy representing the heirs, said the decision was slow but highly appreciated. “Badge’s heirs appreciate this gesture of responsibility by the reinstatement committee and appreciate this recommendation, but it would be preferable if this did not take several years,” he told Dutch News. Told.

A restored ceramic dish Photo: Kunstmuseum Den Haag

moral obligation

The news was welcomed by the Amsterdam Museum, which has labeled two Rutma salt cellars as potentially “looted” art as part of a new exhibition on World War II this year. “This return does justice to history,” director Judiqje Kiers said in a statement. “The research into the history of these objects and their origins has been meticulously undertaken. It’s good to be able to take steps.

Doede Hardeman, head of collections at the Kunstmuseum Den Haag, also welcomed the decision and is preparing to return the collection’s objects. “It’s important for museums to have the right verdict based on history,” he told Dutch News.In a statement, the Rijksmuseum said it would “restore the rights of relatives of victims of the Holocaust and the Nazi regime.” He added that he fully supports the decision.

Turia Meliani, executive council for arts and culture at the Amsterdam City Council, said the city felt a “moral obligation” to return four city-owned salt vaults. The suffering caused to Jewish citizens in particular is unprecedented and irreversible,” she said.

“Jewish citizens were deprived of their property, their rights, their dignity and, in many cases, their lives … The restoration of these works of art is of great importance to the victims and to the recognition of the injustice done to them. very important to do.”

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https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2022/12/precious-objects-lost-in-nazi-germany-to-be-restored-to-rightful-heirs/ Return valuables lost in Nazi Germany to rightful heirs

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