This happened today.
— Gilles Deleuze (via spiritandteeth)
Catalog of the Art School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 1924-1925 (via)
A little history.
Earlier this month, a spectacular cache of more than 1,400 artworks surfaced in Germany—works that had been unknown to the public or presumed to be lost. And as details have emerged, one elderly American has been on the phone to his lawyer every day.
For the past five years, 88-year-old David Toren and his 92-year-old brother—both Holocaust survivors—have been trying to track down a beautiful painting that their great-uncle, the collector David Friedmann, lost due to Nazi persecution: “Two riders on the beach,” by the German Impressionist Max Liebermann. Their lawyer spotted the long-lost painting on TV when it was presented to the public as one of the pieces discovered in an apartment in Munich. But whether the brothers will ever get it back is far from clear.
Between 1933 and 1945, the tightening grip of the Third Reich facilitated one of history’s biggest art thefts. Initially, Jewish dealers were effectively forced to sell their precious collections at bargain prices before fleeing abroad. Later, Jewish-owned collections—such as those of David Friedmann, who died of natural causes in 1942—were systematically confiscated. Other pieces were looted after their owners were deported to concentration camps. Paintings that were deemed modern or subversive were snatched from museums and exhibited as “degenerate” art.
Read more. [Image: Reuters/Michael Dalder]
Instruction No. 2, 1965
Plastic box with offset label, containing soap and hand towel with stamped ink additions
Theodor W. Adorno, “On Some Relationships between Music and Painting”
We’ve got a lot of stuff, but comparatively few records are fully digitized and searchable. We want to change that.
We’re looking for digital volunteers to help us transcribe our records & unlock their stories.
You can transcribe historic Civil War-era documents, letters from American artists, field books or even 100-yr-old botany specimen labels.
Take a spin through our Digital Transcription Center and join us
Archives of American Art materials currently available for transcription are:
The Charles Henry Hart autograph collection, a veritable who’s who of American art in the 19th century with letters from Albert Bierstadt, Thomas Eakins, Rembrandt Peale and over 100 others
German-American artist Oscar Bluemner’s painting diary (calling all German speakers - this one’s bilingual!)
The diary of painter W. L. Judson, which documents his time as a bugle player in a Civil War military band
The Digital Transcription Center is where it is at. Jump in, academic weirdos and archive nerds everywhere. Meet you there.