Investigation into the provenance of museum collections in connection with the theft, confiscation and sale of objects under duress between 1933 and 1945.

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Brush with chinoiserie motif

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Brush with chinoiserie motif

Artist/ Creator
Anonymous
Title
Brush with chinoiserie motif
Year
c. 1700-1730
Technique
Low-fired faience/polychrome
Size
l. 14,8 x b. 8,5 x h. 3,4 cm
Inventorynumber
OCE-1942-0088
Category
Applied art

Museum

Gemeentemuseum Den Haag

Conclusion

The brush was part of the collection confiscated from Hans Ludwig Larsen.

Explanation

Hans Ludwig Larsen was of German Jewish extraction and settled in the Netherlands with his family before 1931. At his death in Wassenaar in 1937 he left a large art collection. His wife Suzanne Larsen-Menzel and their two children became Dutch citizens in 1939. In October of that year they emigrated to the United States. Before leaving, Mrs Larsen-Menzel gave a number of objects from the collection on loan to Gemeentemuseum Den Haag. After the German invasion the new regime identified these items as enemy property and had put them up for sale in 1942 at Van Marle & Bignell auction house.
Unusually, the form on which the museum loan was drawn up in December 1938 and June 1939 contains notes in the handwriting of [auctioneer] Charles John Robert Bignell: ‘Entire loan removed as enemy property and auctioned at Bignell, autumn 42’. In a coarser hand: ‘Not present’ and ‘Removed June 42’. Bignell ticked the objects he took and approved in 1942 in the appendix. On the last page the auctioneer added that according to his inventory, four delftware brushes and one jug with a pewter lid were missing. Finally, he signed for receipt with his characteristic signature. Regarding the four missing brushes, Bignell noted that these were stored in the bomb shelter [possibly of the museum?].

Reconstruction origin

Before 1939 <> 1942
Hans Ludwig Larsen (Collection), Wassenaar

Museum inventory; D. Brongers, M. van Houten-de Kom, Eindrapportage Herkomst & Restitutie Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, The Hague, 22 December 2000; SNK archive no. 156.716

1942 <> present day
Gemeentemuseum Den Haag