City of Wetzlar returns two donor panels to heirs of Ottmar Strauss
Last week, the City of Wetzlar returned two donor panels to the rightful heirs of Ottmar Strauss. As part of a provenance research project funded by the German Lost Art Foundation in Magdeburg, it was possible to determine that the two works of art had been wrongfully seized from the collection of Jewish industrialist Ottmar Strauss in Cologne during the Nazi era.
Before Strauss officially emigrated to Switzerland in 1936, large parts of his collection were auctioned off in three auctions at the Hugo Helbing auction house in Frankfurt am Main in 1934 and 1935. It was there that the Wetzlar-based pediatrician and collector Irmgard von Lemmers-Danforth acquired the two 15th century panels “Kneeling knight” and “Kneeling canon”. She bequeathed her collection, including the two panels, to the City of Wetzlar.
Donor panels commemorated aristocrats and townspeople who paid for glass windows for churches in medieval times.
Project description (only German version)