CONF: Provenance research on the Soviet Occupation Zone and GDR (Berlin, 27 Nov 17)

Provenance research on the Soviet Occupation Zone and GDR. Possibilities and practices in museums – 
Provenienzforschung zur SBZ und DDR. Möglichkeiten und Praxis in den Museen

Berlin, 27. November 2017
Deutsches Historisches Museum
Am Zeughaus 1–3 (Eingang Wasserseite)
10117 Berlin
Registration deadline: Nov 20, 2017

Register here <>

The symposium “provenance research on the Soviet Occupation Zone and GDR” draws attention to a hitherto little-studied complex of provenance research, gaining more and more attention recently. The research on the withdrawal of Cultural Property in the Soviet Occupation Zone (SBZ) and the GDR have the German Historical Museum since taking over the collections of the Museum of German History (MfDG) already led to numerous investigations and restitution, but still no systematic research of collections.

This year, in recognition of the public and scientific discussions, the German Center for Cultural Property Losses has developed guidelines for basic research on provenance research with regard to the SBZ and the GDR. In this context, the symposium discusses  the possibilities as well as the current status of provenance research. Continue reading “CONF: Provenance research on the Soviet Occupation Zone and GDR (Berlin, 27 Nov 17)”

Lecture series: The art market of today: Its actors and their fields of work (Cologne, 19 Oct 17-18 Jan 18)

The art market of today: Its actors and their fields of work

Concept: Jun.-Prof. Dr. Nadine Oberste-Hetbleck

Institute for Art History
University of Cologne
9 October 17-18 January 18

The lectures start at 5:45 pm in auditorium E (Hörsaalgebäude). They are given in German.

The lecture series is open to all.  They are free of charge and registration is not required.

As part of the multi-term spanning series Art market: Research – fields of work – interdisciplinary dialogue, the lecture series is decidedly practice-oriented in this term, after the focus lay on the subject area research in the last two winter terms. Established experts from practical areas of the art market (i.a. auctioneers, art trade/gallery, art insurance, art logistics) will provide an insight into history, work flows and duties of their everyday working life. At the same time, they will address the specific challenges in their branch.

Selected talks will be recorded and published subsequent to the lectures. For more information on the lecture series, the focus on art market studies and other projects of the junior professorship for art history and art market, please visit

…the homepage of the Department for Art History:

…the scientific blog:

Jun.-Prof. Dr. Nadine Oberste-Hetbleck, Jun.-Prof. für Kunstgeschichte und Kunstmarkt, University of Cologne, Department for Art History,

Reference: ANN: Lecture series: The Art Market of Today (Cologne, 19 Oct 17-18 Jan 18). In:, Oct 10, 2017. <>.

ANN: Lectures: Cultural Heritage / Kulturelles Erbe 2.0 (Wuerzburg, 26 Oct 17-01 Feb 18)

“Sammlungen – Provenienz – Kulturelles Erbe 2.0”

Lecture series, Fall 2017/18 

Thursdays, 6:15pm, open to all

Hörsaal 5
Philosophiegebäude Am Hubland
97074 Würzburg
26.10.2017 – 01.02.2018

Lecture series of the Institutes for history, art history and museology of Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg in cooperation with the Museum für Franken (Staatliches Museum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte in Würzburg) Continue reading “ANN: Lectures: Cultural Heritage / Kulturelles Erbe 2.0 (Wuerzburg, 26 Oct 17-01 Feb 18)”

ANN: Lecture Series: Provenance Research / Provenienzforschung (Saarbruecken, 4 Oct 17-7 Feb 18)

HERKUNFT UNGEWISS? – Kunstwerke und ihre Besitzergeschichte

Öffentliche Ringvorlesung zur Provenienzforschung in Kooperation zwischen der Stiftung Saarländischer Kulturbesitz und dem Institut für Kunstgeschichte der Universität des Saarlandes

Provenienzforschung ist ein zentrales Feld heutiger Museumsarbeit, das sich mit der Eigentumsgeschichte von Kunstwerken und Sammlungsobjekten beschäftigt. Heikle Fälle stellen insbesondere jene Werke dar, die in der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus ihren Besitzern entzogen oder während des Zweiten Weltkrieges geraubt und verlagert wurden. Schwierige Rechtsfragen und berührende persönliche Schicksale kennzeichnen die Arbeit der Provenienzforschung. Aber auch historisch gewachsene archäologische und ethnologische Sammlungen des 19. Jahrhunderts erfordern die Erforschung ihrer ursprünglichen Besitzerverhältnisse.

Die Sonderausstellung „Der Berliner Skulpturenfund“ im Museum für Vor- und Frühgeschichte am Schlossplatz wird auch das Schicksal der Saarbrücker Sammlungen in Krieg und Nationalsozialismus präsentieren. Eine eigene Ringvorlesung in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Institut der Kunstgeschichte der Universität des Saarlandes macht daher gehend das Forschungsfeld der Provenienzforschung einer breiteren Öffentlichkeit zugänglich. Namhafte Experten wie Prof.Dr.Dr.h.c.mult. Hermann Parzinger (Präsident der Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz) und Dr. Andreas Hüneke (Forschungsstelle „Entartete Kunst“ der Freien Universität Berlin) geben Einblicke zu bis heute kriegsbedingt verlagerter Beutekunst in Russland und verfemten Künstlern im Dritten Reich. Continue reading “ANN: Lecture Series: Provenance Research / Provenienzforschung (Saarbruecken, 4 Oct 17-7 Feb 18)”

Apply today: CONF, 70 years and counting: The Final Opportunity? (London, 12 Sept, 2017)

12 September 2017
National Gallery, London

For more information or to register an interest, email:

Registrations closing on 31 August

Conference Programme

It is estimated that 20 per cent of Europe’s cultural treasures were stolen or plundered by Nazi Germany, most notably from Jewish families, and over 100,000 of these works are still lost, presumed to be in both public and private collections.

70 Years and Counting: The Final Opportunity? will focus on efforts to identify and return works of art lost during the Nazi-era and particularly on how efforts in this area can be accelerated at this late date. The issue is an international one and international cooperation is essential for the achievement of the goal of providing fair and just solutions.

The Washington Principles provide the framework for each stage of the process, from provenance research and its publication, to access to records, to the provision of national claims processes and fair and just solutions. Provenance research is crucial to the process, as is the ability to locate the substantive evidence of the loss and disposal of objects, without both of which national claims panels will be limited in their range and impact.

Without adequate claims processes, justice will remain unavailable in many places or restricted to those few who seek it through the courts. For the existing national claims processes and committees, the questions they encounter as time progresses become ever more critical and central to upholding the very commitment by the international community to provide justice, however difficult that may be and however long that may take.

The Conference will take stock of achievements and explore the current dilemmas and issues faced by those working in each of these essential areas, concluding with a series of recommendations for accelerating progress. The main sessions of the Conference will consist of panel discussions on key themes, following each of which there will be an opportunity for questions from the audience.

70 Years and Counting: The Final Opportunity? Is sponsored by the Commission for Looted Art in Europe.



09.00 Conference opens, refreshments available

10.00 Welcome: Dr Gabriele Finaldi, Director, National Gallery

10.05 Outline of the day: Clare Pillman, DCMS Director for Culture, Tourism and Sport

10.10 Sponsor: David Lewis, Co-Chair, Commission for Looted Art in Europe

10.15 Keynote address: John Glen MP, Minister for the Arts, Heritage and Tourism

10.30 Session 1: Lost Art: Experience of claimants and institutions
Chair: Sir Paul Jenkins KCB, QC, Former Head of the UK Government Legal Department

Dr Antonia Boström, Keeper of Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics & Glass, Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Imke Gielen, Lawyer, von Trott zu Solz Lammek, Berlin
Simon Goodman, Author of The Orpheus Clock
Anne Webber, Co-Chair, Commission for Looted Art in Europe

The Panel will consider how effective the existing claims processes are for works of art in both public and private collections, the difficulties of making claims in countries that do not have national claims processes or a commitment to return and the role that governments, panels and researchers already play or could play in the provision of justice. It will look at the usefulness of existing provenance research and its publication, consider the challenges faced by claimants in locating missing works of art and accessing records, and explore the contribution and response of museums, art experts and the art trade.

11.40 Short break

11.50 Session 2: National claims processes
Chair: Sir Donnell Deeny, Chair UK Spoliation Advisory Panel

Professor Jan Bank, Member, Restitutions Committee, The Netherlands
Dr Reinhard Binder-Krieglstein, Alternate Member, Art Restitution Advisory Board, Austria
Michel Jeannoutot, Chair, Commission for the Compensation of Victims of Spoliation, France
Professor Reinhard Rürup, Deputy Chair, Advisory Commission, Germany

The Panel will consider the national processes in place across Europe for resolving claims and will look at their success, impartiality and effectiveness. It will look at the emergence of different rulings on the same case in different countries, whether the wishes of museums to keep works of art should be taken into account and the existing barriers to progress. The Panel will consider a wide range of questions including the following. Is there greater scope for information sharing and collaboration between the committees and how should the issue of claims and the passage of time be resolved? Is time limitation part of a fair and just solution and should claimants of the second and third generations or unrelated heirs have lesser rights to recover lost works of art? This session will also report on discussions from the previous day between the committees of the UK, Austria, France, Germany and The Netherlands.

1.00pm LUNCH

2.00pm Session 3: Unlocking the archives: accessibility and disclosure
Chair: Richard Aronowitz-Mercer, Head of Restitution, Sotheby’s Europe

Dr Christian Fuhrmeister, Project Leader, Research Department, Zentralinstitut für Künstgeschichte, Munich
Kristian Jensen, Head of Collections and Curation, British Library
Dr Johannes Nathan, Nathan Fine Art (Potsdam, Zurich)/International Art Market Studies Association
Margreeth Soeting, Member of the Research Staff, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam

The Panel will look at what progress has been made in undertaking and publishing provenance research and in identifying and providing access to museum, art trade, archival and other records. It will discuss the information that is already publicly available and whether its publication is effective, timely and clear, the records that remain inaccessible and what more can be done to publish both works of art and essential records. The Panel will consider what barriers exist to information sharing and accessibility and how these might be overcome.

3.15pm Session 4: Private Collections
Chair: Pierre Valentin, Constantine Cannon, Partner, Art & Cultural Property

Monica Dugot, International Director of Restitution, Christie’s
Martin Levy, H. Blairman & Sons Ltd, art dealer and member of the Spoliation Advisory Panel
Katrin Stoll, Managing Partner, Neumeister Auction House, Munich
Isabel von Klitzing, Provenance research and art consulting

The Panel will consider the issue of looted works in private collections including how private collectors can protect themselves from buying looted art, where they can go for advice and how they can be encouraged to research their collections and reach equitable solutions. The Panel will also discuss the difficulties for claimants in finding works in private collections and how they might seek to recover them, and explore the role of national claims processes and others in providing guidance and fair and just solutions.

4.30pm Refreshments

5.15pm Session 5: The Way Forward
Tony Baumgartner, Deputy Chair of the Spoliation Advisory Panel and Partner at Clyde & Co, will review and summarise the day, noting the conclusions and recommendations reached by each panel and will propose how these might be taken forward in fulfilment of the aims and objectives of the Conference.

6.15pm Drinks Reception

The Met Hosts Inaugural Exchange of Pioneering Provenance Research Program

The first German/American Provenance Research Exchange Program (PREP), which brings together museum and research-institute professionals from both countries who specialize in Holocaust-era provenance projects, was hosted by The Met February 6 to 10. Among the program’s highlights was a panel discussion on February 10 that was open to the public and introduced by Director Thomas Campbell. Panelists included The Met’s Sharon Cott, Senior Vice President, Secretary, and General Counsel, and other figures who support provenance research.

PREP is a pioneering three-year program that gathers 21 German and American grant recipients, the Steering Committee members, and guest speakers twice a year to compare methodologies, ascertain resources, and network among experts. The week-long program at The Met was the first of six systematic exchanges; it will be followed by Berlin in the fall, Los Angeles and Munich in 2018, and Washington, D.C., and Dresden in 2019. Christel Force, Associate Research Curator, Department of Modern and Contemporary Art, is on the Steering Committee and worked with Rebecca Noonan Murray, Special Counsel, Office of the Senior Vice President, Secretary, and General Counsel, to host the group here at The Met.

PREP is organized by the Smithsonian Provenance Research Initiative, Washington, D.C., and the Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin, and four partner institutions: The Metropolitan Museum of Art; The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles; the Staatlichen Kunstsammlungen Dresden; and the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte, Munich. The new Deutsches Zentrum Kulturgutverluste, Magdeburg, is a consultative participant in the program.

PREP New York’s concluding panel discussion, titled “German/ American Exchange on Nazi-Era Provenance Research: A Discussion with Museum Leaders,” was held in the Bonnie J. Sacerdote Lecture Hall. In addition to Sharon, the speakers were Lynn Nicholas, independent scholar and author of The Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe’s Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War; Hermann Parzinger, President, Stiftung Preussischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin; Richard Kurin, Acting Provost and Under Secretary for Museums and Research, Smithsonian Institution,  Washington, D.C.; and Thomas W. Gaehtgens, Director, Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles.

Major support for PREP comes from the German Program for Transatlantic Encounters, financed by the European Recovery Program, and the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.

For more information about PREP, go to

Job: 1 Research Assistant for ‘Provenance Research’ (DHM Berlin)

Stiftung Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin
Application dead-line: 25.08.2017

Stiftung Deutsches Historisches Museum has a job opening as Research Assistant for Provenance Research for two years in Berlin.

The rest of the post is in German. Continue reading “Job: 1 Research Assistant for ‘Provenance Research’ (DHM Berlin)”