An amicable resolution has been reached between the rightful owners of Maurice de Vlaminck’s ‘La Voile Blanche á Bougival’ (White Sales at Bougival) and the current owner.
The Fauvist painting was taken in 1940 as part of the Nazi movement to confiscate ‘degenerate’ works of art from Jewish art dealers. The Bernheim-Jeune family were one of the first Jewish art dealers to be affected by the process. During the organised confiscation, Nazi’s siezed countless precious objects and dispersed them through Nazi approved dealers.
Recovery efforts for this particular work began as soon as the war ended. The painting was missing for nearly four decades before showing up. There were several instances where the work painting was identified during sale but recognition of the buyers ‘good faith’ prevented it from being returned to the family, once in 1978 and again in 1992.
With the help of Art Recovery International an amicable resolution was reached by presenting a compelling argument to the current owners. Chris Marinello CEO of Art Recovery International said “The resolution of Nazi-era claims is always rewarding.”
As part of the conclusion of the efforts, the work was included in the Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern February day sale. The lot reached £150,000 which exceeded its estimate of £100,000.
“Even after 70 years, the rightful owners of this work have had their claim recognised” said Marinello.