Could cracking the case of the Nazis’ stolen art lead to other looted treasure?

Though spectacular [the Gurlitt find], this is not the only example of art reappearing many decades after the war. In March 2007, a man named Bruno Lohse died aged 95. Afterwards, in a safe-deposit box of his in Zurich, three paintings were discovered. One, a Pissarro, had been stolen by the Gestapo in Paris in 1938. Before his death, another 14 pictures — their identity unknown — had been removed from the box.

Lohse had been in an ideal position to grab plundered art for himself. During the war, he acted as Goering’s representative at the Jeu de Paume in Paris, used as a clearing house for stolen treasures by the ERR or Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg, a task force headed Alfred Rosenberg and dedicated to grabbing cultural valuables. On one occasion, a French curator saw Lohse secreting four paintings in his car.

 

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