The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 Saturday, September 19, 2020


National Gallery of Art returns Picasso work to settle claim
Portrait photograph of Pablo Picasso, 1908.

by Catherine Hickley



NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- The National Gallery of Art in Washington announced that it will return a pastel by Pablo Picasso, “Head of a Woman,” to the heirs of a prominent German Jewish banker who was persecuted by the Nazis.

The 1903 Blue Period pastel of a dark-haired, unsmiling woman — her identity is unknown — is one of at least 16 masterpieces that banker Paul von Mendelssohn-Bartholdy sold in the months after the Nazis seized power and before his death in 1935.

A relative of famous composer Felix Mendelssohn and Enlightenment philosopher Moses Mendelssohn, Mendelssohn-Bartholdy was ousted from the Central Association of German Banks and Bankers in 1933 and from the board of the Reich Insurance Office in 1934. The family bank was “aryanised” — transferred to non-Jewish ownership — in 1938.

“Head of a Woman” was sold to dealer Justin K. Thannhauser in 1934. The National Gallery of Art said it acquired the pastel as a donation in 2001.

The museum said it has decided to transfer ownership of the drawing in a settlement “to avoid the heavy toll of litigation.” The decision, it said, “does not constitute an acknowledgment of the merit or validity of the asserted claims.”

A representative for the heirs, who include Berlin historian and political scientist Julius Schoeps, said there is no doubt that the work was sold as a result of persecution. Mendelssohn-Bartholdy was subjected to boycotts, land expropriations and the loss of many of his positions, said John J. Byrne, the heirs’ Washington lawyer.

“By 1934, his income had plummeted to 14% of what it had been in 1932,” he said. “His alimony payments were double his income. That is someone selling under economic duress.”

In 2009, just as a trial was about to begin in federal court, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Museum of Modern Art, both in New York, reached settlements with the heirs on two other Picassos that Mendelssohn-Bartholdy sold to Thannhauser under similar circumstances.

The museums had previously attempted to fend off the claims, which they said had “no basis,” by requesting a declaration confirming their ownership from the District Court for the Southern District of New York. The final terms of the settlements for the two works, “Le Moulin de Galette” and “Boy Leading a Horse,” were not disclosed, but both artworks remained in the museum collections.

Another Picasso, a painting once owned by Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, was acquired by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation in 1995. After reaching a settlement with the heirs, the foundation sold the work, the 1903 “Portrait of Angel Fernández de Soto (The Absinthe Drinker),” for $51.8 million, with commission, at a Christie’s auction in London in 2010.

© 2020 The New York Times Company










Today's News

April 2, 2020

Preeminent Antique Carpet Gallery Reaches Out to Clientele with Message of Inspiration

Museums scramble to document the pandemic, even as it unfolds

National Gallery of Art returns Picasso work to settle claim

Edinburgh arts festival cancelled due to virus: organisers

As furloughs grow, Kennedy Center defends Use of $25 million in aid

Hauser & Wirth to open online exhibition 'George Condo. Drawings for Distanced Figures'

Take a virtual tour of New York's museum district

Asuka Anastacia Ogawa joins Blum & Poe

Works by Maria Helena Vieira da Silva featured in Di Donna Galleries' inaugural online viewing room

Adam Schlesinger, songwriter for rock, film and the stage, dies at 52

Balcony stars bring joy to self-isolating French

2020 Porter Fleming Literary Competition award winners

Sotheby's launches online day sales of Contemporary and Impressionist & Modern Art this May

National Gallery of Victoria launches at home activities and education resources

Lamps burn bright at Jeffrey S. Evans 19th & 20th Century Lighting Auction

Yale Center For British Art's Scott Wilcox begins phased retirement after 3 decades

Hellmut Stern, 91, dies; Violinist returned to Germany after fleeing

Derek Jarman's Prospect Cottage saved for the nation

Leading arts education charity supports the vulnerable during isolation with new digital platform

Chinese 'light painter' takes artistic inspiration from virus

Wallace Roney, jazz trumpet virtuoso, is dead at 59

The coronavirus hasn't slowed classical music

Bedroom composers all: Musicians are making art in a pandemic

Closing a business in UAE: Conditions to Meet to Undergo Company Liquidation

Full-Spectrum Cannabis Extracts vs CBD Isolate

The Difference Between Green Vein and Red Vein Kratom

What is Kratom, and Why Did They Ban it in The UK?

Enjoy the Splendor of Stunning Canvas Wall Art and Make Your Interior an Absolute Beauty




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org avemariasound.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful