Art Law: Magdeburg Court on Deletion of Entry in Lost Art Database

Kalabrische KüsteIn a judgment of November 2019, which was reported in the press only recently, the Magdeburg District Court (Landgericht) had to decide a dispute between the current owner of a painting and the heirs of a former owner who had the painting registered in the Lost Art Database. The judgment has, in true German tradition, been published in an anonymised version. Read in conjunction with the press coverage of the dispute in The Art Newspaper, Süddeutsche or Handelsblatt, it is however easy to fill in the blanks.  Continue reading

Art Law: German Lost Art Foundation Establishes “Help Desk”

Deutsches Zentrum KulturgutverlusteLast week, the German Lost Art Foundation (Deutsches Zentrum für Kulturgutverluste) announced that as of the beginning of this year, it has established a help desk to support victims of Nazi persecution and their descendants with enquiries regarding looted art. Here’s from the press release: Continue reading

Towards a Restatement of Restitution Rules: Research into the International Practice of Nazi-looted Art Restitution

FPKProfessor Matthias Weller, University of Bonn,  (who has contributed to this blog in the past) hat issued the following press release about an exiting new project, which I would like to share with you:

“In April 2019, research began at the University of Bonn on international practice in the restitution of artworks stolen under the Nazi regime. Head of the research project is Prof. Dr. Matthias Weller, who holds the “Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach professorship for civil law, art and cultural property law”.

The project aims to provide a comprehensive, comparative analysis of international practice in the restitution of Nazi-looted art. It aims to establish a generalized set of rules on how decisions are made based on considerations of fairness and justice.

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Art Law: Application of Nama Traditional Leaders Association Fails in Stuttgart Court

The Constitutional Court (Verfassungsgerichtshof) of the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg had to deal with an application of the Nama Traditional Leaders Association regarding the return of historic items that once belonged to Hendrik Wittboi. Witbooi (c. 1830 – 1905) was a chief of the Nama or ǀKhowesin people in present-day Namibia German South West Africa (Deutsch Südwestafrika) at the time. He is regarded as one of the national heroes of Namibia, having lead the 1904 fight against German colonial rule.

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