Presentation on theme: "Stolen Art: WWII to Present. Think of an item (art, jewelry, furniture, ect.) of importance to you and your family. How would you feel if this item was."— Presentation transcript:
Stolen Art: WWII to Present
Think of an item (art, jewelry, furniture, ect.) of importance to you and your family. How would you feel if this item was stolen?
WWII and Art Theft During WWII a large number of artwork were stolen from museums and private owners. As the Nazis invaded a country, they would go through and take the art that they wanted without regard for who it belonged to. This was called Nazi plundering.
Degenerate Art Artworks considered degenerate, which meant it was deemed unacceptable to Nazi ideology, was usually destroyed or sold to make money for the Nazis during the war. The Nazis removed over 16,000 works of modern art from museums in Germany.
How do you think war changes what art, books, and opinions are seen and heard?
Art, War and Preservation In the United States, there was an outcry for the preservation of art and architecture as the war continued. The Roberts Commission was formed in response. A group of American soldiers named the Monuments Men were created to preserve and protect important works of art and architecture.
The Monuments Men The Monuments Men were mostly volunteer art historians who became soldiers to help the military avoid destroying important sites. In areas that had already been attacked, the Monuments Men came in and tried to preserve what was left and protect the art from more damage.
The Monuments Men After WWII ended, the Monuments Men were responsible for restoring artwork that had been damaged during the war and trying to find the rightful owners of works stolen by the Nazis.
Fighting for Art Today the search continues for families to return stolen art. Unfortunately, many of the owners did not survive the war so it has been necessary to search for their heirs.
Fighting for Art Even today, families fight to get their art returned but after the war some works were sold, given to museums or even hidden in order to keep them from being taken and returned.
Fighting for Art The statute of limitations of claiming artwork has sometimes been a huge setback for families looking to have their art returned.
Do you think that the statues of limitation should apply to art stolen during WWII? Explain.
Present Day Art Theft: Millions of works still missing
Have you heard of any recent art thefts? How often do you think art is stolen?
-January 10, 2012, three works of art were stolen from Greece’s National Art Gallery in Athens. One of the works was a 20 th century Picasso. -Since 2006, five Picasso’s have been stolen from museums around the world, including a 2010 burglary in Paris where more than $120 million worth of art was stolen overnight. -Less than 10 percent of stolen art is ever recovered and authorities know little about what exactly happens to such works after the theft. Picasso’s Woman’s Head was stolen on January 10, 2012, from Greece’s largest museum Current Art Theft
Top Ten Stolen Artists in All Media Pablo Picasso 699 Salvador Dali 396 Joan Miro 390 Marc Chagall 361 Albrecht Durer 212 Pierre-Auguste Renoir 192 Andy Warhol 183 Rembrandt van Rijn 181 Peter Paul Rubens 147 Henri Matisse 138
FBI Art Crime Team The FBI created an Art Crime Team (ACT) in 2004 that is made up of 13 special agents and 3 special trial attorneys. So far the team has recovered more than 2,600 items valued at over $142 million. They run the National Stolen Art File that is a computerized list of stolen and missing artwork from all over the world.
Recent Art Theft Stories
Leonardo Da Vinci Madonna with the Yarnwinder, 1501, Oil on wood Missing since August 27, 2003 from Drumlanrig Castle, Scotland Estimated current value: $61 million Story: Two men dressed as tourists taking a public tour of Drumlanrig Castle overpowered a young tour guide and stole this masterpiece. Aided by two accomplices, the men escaped in a white Volkswagen Golf, which they abandoned nearby. Recovered October, 2007!
Henry Moore Reclining Figure, 1970, Bronze sculpture, 2.7 tons Missing since December 15, 2005, from the Henry Moore Foundation in England Estimated current value: $5.2 million Story: The sculpture had been temporarily moved to a yard in preparation for repositioning elsewhere on the foundation’s grounds. Using a crane and a stolen flatbed truck, three thieves were able to hoist the sculpture and drive away with it at about 10PM. A few days later, police found the abandoned truck. It is feared that the bronze sculpture was melted down for scrape metal.
Why do you think people steal art and what happens to it? (Did you know the even Mona Lisa was stolen?!)
Interesting Art Thefts
Three paintings by Van Gogh, Picasso and Gauguin worth $6.2 million were stolen from the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester in The next day they were found next to a public toilet. They were slightly damaged and crammed into a tube behind the toilet. A note was attached to the paintings claiming the motive of the thieves was to highlight poor security at the gallery.
In one of the most audacious art thefts, armed robbers walked into Stockholm's National Museum in 2000 as visitors were milling around. They took a Rembrandt and two Renoir paintings and escaped by a speedboat getting away with paintings worth an estimated $36 million.
*EXTRA CREDIT* For extra credit, choose one of the art thefts listed below and do research on it. Write 2-3 full paragraphs about the theft and list the works of art stolen, the estimated worth of all the works stolen, how the theft took place, and if the works have been recovered or not. 1.Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Theft 2.The Van Gogh Museum Robbery 3.Theft from E.G. Bührle Collection, Zurich