In the Nazi-era restitution of art news corner, The Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent has decided not to return 'Portrait of Ludwig Adler' by Oskar Kokoschka to the heirs of Von Klemperer.
They argued that the Jewish banker and Dresdener art collector Victor Von Klemperer was forced to sell the piece under pressure in 1937 and they filed a case to recover the work on the grounds of historical circumstances and international treaties on the returning of looted jewish art.
The City of Ghent had an independent commision, chaired by former president of the Studiecommissie en de Commissie voor de schadeloosstelling van de Joodse Gemeenschap van België, look at the claims. According to them Von Klemperer was not pressured to sell the work.
On the basis of this advice the painting, which was acquired legally by the Museum in 1989 will not be returned.
Picture credit Zeldenrust.