Kunstsammlung Oetker restitutes painting by Anthony van Dyck to the heir of Jacques Goudstikker
Bielefeld-based family business Dr. Oetker is returning a painting to Marei von Saher, the heir of Jewish art dealer Jacques Goudstikker. The work entitled “Portrait of Adriaen Moens” by Anthony van Dyck has been identified as Nazi-confiscated property.
The renowned Jewish art dealer Jacques Goudstikker had to leave the painting behind in Amsterdam when he fled the Netherlands in May 1940, shortly before the Nazi invasion. It was then forcibly sold and acquired by Hermann Göring. Rudolf-August Oetker bought the painting in good faith in 1956 from an Old Masters dealer after the Dutch government had sold it to the dealer. Mr. Oetker transferred it to the Kunstsammlung Oetker in 1998. Ms. von Saher identified the painting and notified the Kunstsammlung Oetker of her restitution claim.
Kunstsammlung Rudolf-August Oetker GmbH appointed an independent provenance researcher to systematically examine the art collection holdings for Nazi-confiscated property. The aim was to determine whether any artworks in the collection had originally belonged to persons persecuted by the Nazis on the grounds of descent, religion, nationality, ideology or political opposition and who had therefore been wrongfully deprived of their property.
Uwe M. Schneede, member of the executive board of the German Lost Art Foundation, said: “The commitment shown by this private collection to examine the provenance of its holdings and to seek fair and just solutions together with the heirs of the victims of National Socialism, in line with the Washington Principles, is exemplary. We sincerely hope that other private organizations follow this example.”
Since the Lost Art Foundation was established on January 1, 2015, it has provided specialist advice to public institutions, privately funded organizations and private individuals in Germany with regard to researching their holdings for Nazi-confiscated property. Privately run institutions and individuals can also apply for project funding from the German Lost Art Foundation, provided their search for Nazi-confiscated property pursues a just and fair solution in accordance with the Washington Principles and the Joint Declaration. The Foundation’s funding guidelines are currently being expanded accordingly.