Berlinische Galerie restitutes five-part painting series
The Berlinische Galerie has today returned a five-part series of paintings by Fidus (Hugo Höppener) to the rightful heirs of the original owner, Richard Neuhäuser. The work “Tempeltanz der Seele” (Temple Dance of the Soul) has been identified as Nazi-confiscated property. The gallery has been able to acquire the painting series from the heirs, meaning that it will continue to be available to the public.
Businessman Richard Neuhäuser (1882–1935) commissioned the Tempeltanz in 1910. After 1933, the family suffered persecution under the Nazis because of their Jewish origins. Neuhäuser took his own life shortly after the Nuremberg Laws were introduced in September 1935. The painting series passed to his daughter, Gabriele Neuhäuser, who fled to Australia in 1937 and had to leave it behind. The Berlinische Galerie bought the artwork in 1974. It was one of the first acquisitions for the museum, which was still being established at that time.
The Berlinische Galerie has been carrying out provenance research since 2006 and is researching the art market of the modern era in its artists archives with the aim of tracing works that were seized through Nazi persecution. The German Lost Art Foundation has already provided funding to the Berlinische Galerie for a long-term and a short-term project.
Press release by the Berlinische Galerie (only German version)