IFAR Journal

Volume 12, No. 2


Not a Moment Too Soon: A New Research Tool Untangles ERR Records
— Nancy Yeide
A report on the new database of thousands of confiscated art objects that were processed through the Jeu de Paume museum in Paris by the Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg during the Nazi era. The database comprises Nazi records and photos and digitized index cards from the National Archives.

NAGPRA's 20th Anniversary: Reflections on the Watershed Law Impacting the Collecting of Native American Objects
— Susan Benton Bruning
An overview of cultural and political concerns that led to the enactment of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) in 1990 and the current state of key issues addressed by the law.

News and Updates: The Picassos Gave What to Whom? Picasso's Electrician Reveals Cache of Unknown Works
— Sharon Flescher
The story of Picasso's electrician, Pierre Le Guennec, who approached the Picasso Administration in 2010 requesting the authentication of a large cache of works reportedly by the artist and purportedly given to him by the artist and his widow in the 1970s. The Picasso family subsequently asked authorities to file a criminal complaint for theft and recel.

— Sharon Flescher and Mary Morabito Rosewater
A discussion of the recent settlements of two lawsuits -- Simon-Whelan and Shaer -- and the voluntary withdrawal of a third lawsuit, Thompson, against the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Warhol Authentication Board. Faced with the Board 's threats to seek personal sanctions against them, the respective plaintiffs, all of whom possessed works that were denied authentication by the Board, withdrew their cases on the basis that they could not support their antitrust claims against the Foundation. In a fourth lawsuit, Malanga v. Chamberlain, the plaintiff claims that the defendant wrongfully possessed a work created by him -- which was, however, authenticated as a Warhol by the Warhol Authentication Board -- and then sold the work as a Warhol.

News and Updates: Lost at Sea in the Fine Print -- Park West Opponents Face Setbacks in Cruise Ship Auction Litigation
— Mary Morabito Rosewater
An examination of both sides of In re Park West Galleries, Inc., Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation, the consolidation of lawsuits by art-buying cruise ship passengers against Park West Galleries. A separate but related case, Park West Galleries, Inc. v. Global Fine Art Registry, LLC, is also discussed.

News and Updates: Breaking -- and Bad -- News from Cairo
— Jack A. Josephson
Update on the looting and damage of treasures from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo during political upheavals in January 2011 and speculation on the fate of the Minister of Antiquities, Zahi Hawass.

News and Updates: Yale and Peru End Machu Picchu Dispute --Pots Will Go Back; Research Will Continue
— Frederic J. Truslow
A report on the agreement between Yale University and the government of Peru regarding the return of objects that Hiram Bingham removed from the Incan ruins of Machu Picchu in 1911.

Stolen Art
Stolen items include a soapstone carving of Lao-se Riding and six other decorative works of art stolen from the Chinese Pavilion in Drottningholm, Sweden; Henry Moore's bronze, Two-Piece Reclining Figure, stolen in Paris; three woodcut prints by German and Austrian artists, stolen at Los Angeles International Airport.

Missing Art

Missing items include Salvador DalĂ­'s Lady with Drawers, missing from a museum in Belgium; two works on paper; Henry Moore's Three Reclining Figures on Pedestals, missing from a gallery in Worcestershire, U.K., and Joseph Beuys' Jurte, missing from a private residence in Brookline, MA.

Recovered Art
Recovered items include Edgar Degas' Blanchisseuses Souffrant des Dents (Laundry Women with Toothache), stolen in 1973 from a museum in France; Johan Zoffany's Portrait of Major George Maule, stolen in 1979.