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Thu May 2, 2019, 03:43 PM

LA Judge Rules Against San Diego Jewish Family Over $30M Painting Looted By Nazis

KCAL9 CBS Los Angeles
May 2, 2019 at 11:34 am

A 15-year court battle has seemingly come to an end after an L.A. federal judge ruled Tuesday that a Spanish museum which acquired a $30 million painting looted by the Nazis is the work’s rightful owner, and not the San Diego Jewish family of a woman who surrendered it 80 years ago to escape the Holocaust.Camille Pissarro’s “Rue Saint-Honore: Afternoon, Rain Effect,” which depicts a 19th century Paris street scene, has been housed at the Thyssen-Bornemisza museum in Madrid since 1993. Pissarro created the stunning oil-on-canvas work of a rainy Paris street scene from what he saw out the window of a hotel room in 1897. It is valued at around $30 million. In his 34-page ruling Tuesday, U.S. District Judge John F. Walter found no evidence the museum knew it was looted art when it took possession in 1993.

According to the lawsuit first filed in L.A. federal court in 2005, the Nazis confiscated the painting from Lilly Cassirer, whose Jewish family owned a prominent art gallery in Berlin in the 1930s. Lilly Cassirer was among the last of the family to flee ahead of the Holocaust. As she tried to leave Germany, a Nazi official forced her to surrender the painting in exchange for the exit visa she needed. Her sister, who remained, was later killed in a Nazi death camp. The painting had been sold and resold after Cassirer and her family fled Germany. Swiss industrialist Baron Hans Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza purchased the painting in 1976 from a St. Louis art collector for $300,000. In 1993, Spain bought Thyssen-Bornemisza’s collection for $350 million to hang at his namesake museum, which repeatedly refused to return the painting to the Cassirer family. Thyssen-Bornemisza died in 2002.

Under Spanish law, Walter ruled, the painting is legally the museum’s. However, Walter also criticized Spain, calling its decision to keep the painting “inconsistent” with international agreements that it and other countries have signed “based upon the moral principle that art and cultural property confiscated by the Nazis from Holocaust (Shoah) victims should be returned to them or their heirs.” Walter, who has seen the case returned to court twice by appeals, conducted the non-jury trial in December. A lawyer for Lilly Cassirer’s great-grandson, David Cassirer of San Diego, didn’t say whether the family plans to appeal.

More at:

https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2019/05/02/la-judge-rules-against-san-diego-jewish-family-over-30m-painting-looted-by-nazis/

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Reply LA Judge Rules Against San Diego Jewish Family Over $30M Painting Looted By Nazis (Original post)
MosheFeingold May 2019 OP
still_one May 2019 #1
MosheFeingold May 2019 #2
still_one May 2019 #6
WheelWalker May 2019 #4
Karadeniz May 2019 #9
ZZenith May 2019 #3
MosheFeingold May 2019 #5
ZZenith May 2019 #7
appalachiablue May 2019 #8

Response to MosheFeingold (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2019, 03:46 PM

1. Spain has quite an anti-semitic history

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Response to still_one (Reply #1)

Thu May 2, 2019, 03:50 PM

2. Yeah

If you read further, this turned on a Spanish law that was essentially written to screw over Jewish victims of the Shoa (Holocaust).

Austria and Germany have better laws.

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Response to MosheFeingold (Reply #2)

Thu May 2, 2019, 04:04 PM

6. That information is interesting. Thanks

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Response to still_one (Reply #1)

Thu May 2, 2019, 04:02 PM

4. Quite.

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Response to still_one (Reply #1)

Thu May 2, 2019, 07:40 PM

9. The antisemitism in Spain was due to the lovely Roman Catholic church and the unchristian

Inquisition. Spain didn't have much problem with Muslims until el Cid stirred up Christian s.

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Response to MosheFeingold (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2019, 04:00 PM

3. So a painting stolen by the Nazis and hanging in a museum named after a Nazi industrialist

in a country the Nazis helped to take over does not belong to its original owner.

Hmmmm.

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Response to ZZenith (Reply #3)

Thu May 2, 2019, 04:02 PM

5. I'm off to the pub to have a drink

I'm quite pissed off.

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Response to MosheFeingold (Reply #5)

Thu May 2, 2019, 04:05 PM

7. I would buy you one if I lived closer, brother.

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Response to MosheFeingold (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2019, 05:09 PM

8. Disturbing decision for the family that also brings more scrutiny of museums.



Claude Cassirer & wife Beverley in 2010 in front of a copy of the Pissarro painting, 'Rue Saint-Honor, Afternoon, Rain Effect' (1897).



Pissarro masterpiece, 'Rue Saint-Honore, Afternoon, Rain Effect' (1897,) displayed in the home of the Cassirer family in Germany before the Second World War.

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