France hands back Nazi looted art to Jewish family

Head of the paintings department at the Louvre museum, Sebastien Allard, poses next to paintings looted by Nazis during World War II, at the Louvre museum, in Paris, Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018. (AP)
Updated 12 February 2018
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France hands back Nazi looted art to Jewish family

PARIS: France will return three paintings by the Flemish master Joachim Patinir Monday to the descendants of a Jewish family who were forced to sell them as they fled the Nazis.
The Bromberg family fled to Paris from Germany in late 1938 and were forced to sell the 16th-century “Triptych of the Crucifixion” depicting Christ on the cross the following year, along with several other paintings so they could get to the United States via Switzerland.
The paintings are to be formally handed over to the descendants of Herta and Henry Bromberg at the Louvre Museum by French Culture Minister Francoise Nyssen.
It is the second time in two years that the French state has returned despoiled art to the family.
In 2016 it handed over another 16th-century painting, “Portrait of a Man,” by one of the followers of Antwerp artist Joos van Cleve.
The Patinir paintings had languished for nearly seven decades unclaimed in the French state collections after they were recovered in Munich after World War II.
The triptych had been bought at a knock-down price after the German occupation of Paris and was destined for Hitler’s Fuhrermuseum in his home town of Linz in Austria, where he wanted to build “the ideal museum.”
Patinir is regarded as the father of landscape painting, and developed the panoramic style that became a hallmark of the northern Renaissance.
France has stepped up its efforts to returned art looted during World War II to its rightful owners, using geneological experts to try and trace families.
“It is no longer acceptable to wait for descendants to turn up and ask for the restitution of their family’s art for them to be given their due,” said former culture minister Audrey Azoulay, who now heads UNESCO.
It is thought that up to 100,000 works of art, and millions of books, were stolen from French Jews or Jews who had fled to France before the German occupation.
The Allies found around 60,000 of the missing artworks after the war, and France has been returning works to families since the 1960s — although only 30 were given back up to 1994.
Since then there has been a more concerted effort with a commission of experts, historians and archivists dedicated to resolving the problem since 2013.


Where We Are Going Today: Stationery Fantasies

Updated 16 November 2018
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Where We Are Going Today: Stationery Fantasies

  • Rawae’e Al-Maktabaat is the perfect place for kids and their parents to relax and enjoy a creative time

Rawae’e Al-Maktabaat (Stationery Fantasies) in Jeddah aims to awaken children’s creativity.
Located on Prince Sultan Road in Al-Zahra’a district, the facility is divided into six parts: The water park, indoor activity area, children’s costume shop, toy store, stationery shop and housewares stores.
There are four floors of indoor activity options for kids to choose from. The floors are divided into rooms filled with different activities such as cookery, carpentry, art and soap making. The toddler room has a ball pit and a sand pit.
The water park has a variety of slides and a wave pool. There are cafes and seats for adults to relax.
Rawae’e Al-Maktabaat is the perfect place for kids and their parents to relax and enjoy a creative time.