Acquisitions between 1933 and 1945

Art and arts and craft collection area

As a result of donations, acquisitions at auction, transfers or exchanges, the museum received artwork which required an investigation of acquisitions made between 1933 and 1945. The respective items were rarely documented fully so that few biographies and previous owners are known.

As part of the research project “Provenance research in the arts and arts and craft collection field of the Leipzig Museum of City History for acquisitions between 1933 and 1945“ (which ran from June 2019 to August 2022), paintings and sculptures, as well as graphics (water colours, drawings) were investigated. This resulted in the systematic researching of 323 provenances and the establishment of relationships with local art dealers as well as municipal agencies to gain an improved overview of the structures at the time. There was need for action, e.g. with regard to the acquisitions and donations from the Leipzig art dealer Curt Naubert and the Hans Klemm auction house since these companies are proven to have been involved in the theft of cultural assets under the Nazi regime. This, in turn, led to significant suspicions of acts of confiscation as a result of Nazi persecution.

The researched provenances are documented in detail in the collection database "Provenienzforschung la04-i2019".

The publication containing the research results concluded the three-year project.

This project was supported by the German Lost Art Foundation.