Tag: Looted Art

Art Law: Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts Established

The Cultural Foundation of the German Federal States (Kulturstiftung der Länder) has established a new central port of call for all questions about collections from colonial contexts in Germany: the Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts, or CP3C for short. It became operative this week. Here is from Markus Hilgert, General Secretary of the Cultural Foundation of the German Federal States and Director of the CP3C:

“In establishing the Contact Point, the Federal Government, Länder [federal states] and municipalities have put in place an important prerequisite for dialogue in the spirit of partnership with countries and societies of origin concerning how to deal responsibly with collections from colonial contexts. This attests to the unwavering commitment of everyone involved to a joint reckoning with Germany’s colonial history as part of our society’s culture of remembrance.”

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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: Proposed Legislation for the Reform of Limitation Rules

In December 2013, as a reaction to the Gurlitt art find, the newly appointed Bavarian Minister of Justice announced that Bavaria would propose a change of the German Civil Code to address the application of the statute of limitation to looted art. And he delivered: The proposal was approved by the Bavarian State Government today. Bavaria’s initiative to amend the Civil Code – which is federal, not state law – will now be dealt with in the Upper Chamber (Bundesrat) of the German parliament. It is expected to be on the Bundesrat’s agenda on February 14, 2014. If it passes this hurdle, the proposal will be dealt with, and ideally approved by, the Lower Chamber (Bundestag). Here is a link to the proposed legislation – the Kulturgut-Rückgewähr-Gesetz, or Art Restitution Act. Watch this space for a more detailed post commenting on the proposal.

Art Law: Litigation is Coming Closer in Gurlitt Case

We have covered the spectacular Gurlitt case here before. The treasure trove of looted art seized by the Bavarian public prosecutor’s office in a Schwabing apartment raises complex legal issues at the cross-road of the law of seizure and the law of movable property – these were discussed at the VII. Heidelberg Art Law Conference last week. The panel discussion was jointly organized by the German Institute of Art and Law and the Research Center for Transnational Commercial Dispute Resolution at EBS University of Economics and Law, Wiesbaden.  I am glad that one of the panellists, Professor Matthias Weller, co-director of IFKUR and director of the EBS Dispute Resolution Center, has agreed to share his views in a guest post. He argues that the seizure of the works of art by the Augsburg public prosecution opens the doors for civil law claims. Read More