Website of the German Lost Art Foundation

The Art Hunt! Where Are the Lost Paintings Hidden?

funding area Nazi confiscated art Grant recipient Jüdisches Museum München State Bavaria Website Project type Short-term project to investigate matter of current interest Funding duration
  1. September bis Oktober 2015


This provenance research project was launched in response to a live investigative report by the “Follow the Money” (FtM) team at the transmediale festival in cooperation with gebrueder beetz filmproduction, which is now documented on

“A painting that was lost 77 years ago and to which more than 30 people owe their lives. A search with a completely unknown outcome. A mystery that we want to solve together with you. This is #kunstjagd.”

What many believed to be a lost painting by Otto Th. W. Stein was discovered in the possession of a private collector in Munich which matches the dimensions, year of origin, catalogue entry and the memories of the contemporary witness Edward Engelberg. Painted in 1917 in Chemnitz, it depicts Helene Stein, the artist’s first wife. It was found again damaged in Munich after the Second World War.

As part of the live investigative report, further clues to its provenance were discovered which, because of the six-week project concept, couldn’t be exhaustively researched. The evidence includes correspondence between the Munich collector and Otto Th. W. Stein, and a restoration report by the frame-making workshop Pfefferle. The goal of the project is to fill in the remaining gaps in the painting’s provenance history.

The findings were presented in the lobby of the Jewish Museum in Munich and were accompanied by the film “Die #Kunstjagd”, broadcasted on Bayerischer Rundfunk.

© Jüdisches Museum München