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

menu Skip over navigation | Sla menu over

Rijksmuseum

to museum overview

Rijksmuseum

Museumstraat 1 1071 XX Amsterdam www.rijksmuseum.nl

Investigation results

This museum has 21 objects with a potentially problematic provenance.

Result of this investigation

Given the extent of the Rijksmuseum’s holdings and the volume of acquisitions since 1933, investigators are examining the collection in phases. Investigators began by checking the paintings (923) and drawings (around 19,000) acquired in 1933-1939 and 1949-2012. The current report relates to the paintings acquired in these periods.

Other items in the Rijksmuseum collection will be investigated in the coming years. Results will be available online.

While investigators have yet to finish investigating the museum’s applied art holdings, a pair of silver salt cellars by Johannes Lutma are included in the current report. These are part of a set of four with identical provenance. Since Amsterdam Museum’s investigators found the two companion salt cellars to have problematic provenance, the Rijksmuseum decided to include this pair in the current report. The salt cellars appear to have been part of the estate of Emma Budge, confiscated by Germany’s Nazi regime in 1937.

Paintings

The Rijksmuseum’s investigators examined the provenance of paintings acquired by the museum in 1933-39 and 1949-2012; loans from other museums and RCE Cultural Heritage Agency were not examined. Although it is the responsibility of all lenders to investigate their own holdings, the museum’s investigators did check loans from KOG Royal Antiquarian Society and individual lenders. The results of the investigation have been incorporated into the data accompanying the paintings on the Rijksmuseum website. While 51 percent of the paintings examined no longer have gaps in their provenance for the years 1933-1945, 49 percent do lack provenance for this period. Based on the investigators’ experience to date, that does not imply their provenance is lost: investigators report that further investigation in the future will bring more information to light.

The museum reports that while the provenance of eight specific paintings is problematic, it is possible to identify the rightful owner of one of these.

  • Anonymous (copy after Joseph Vivien’s), Maximilian II Maria Emanuel (1662-1726), Elector of Bavaria, at the Battle of Mohacs against the Turks was old by Thole at Mak van Waay in 1942. Here too, no record exists of how and when Thole acquired the work.
    Anonymous, Chariclea, was bought at the Dutch art market in 1944 and shipped to Germany. The whereabouts of the painting prior to 1943 are unknown.
  • Moritz Calisch’s Two Women in Italian Costume may have been sold at Van Braam auction house in 1943. It was listed in the Rijksmuseum collection in 1970. Who sold it in 1943 is not recorded and it is unclear where the painting was between 1943 and 1970.
  • Adriaen Hanneman’s Willem III (1650-1702), Prince of Orange as a Child may have been in the possession of the Hohenzollern family during the war, or the heirs of Alexandra Zubkow who resided at the Hohenzollern palaces in Potsdam and Berlin where much was stolen during the war.
  • Jan Adam Kruseman’s Salome with the Head of John the Baptist was sold at Van Braam auction house in Amsterdam in 1943; who the vendor was is not recorded and it is unclear where the painting was between 1943 and 1960.
  • Anton Mauve's Portrait of  Pieter Frederik van Os was owned by G.A. van Rede of Bennekom until 1945. Van Rede registered the work as missing at SNK after the war. The museum is attempting to contact Van Rede’s heirs.
  • Jan Mijtens’s Govert van Slingelandt (1623-90), Lord of Dubbeldam, with his First Wife Christina van Beveren and their two Sons was sold at Mak van Waay auction house in Amsterdam in 1942 by J.J. Thole. How and when Thole acquired the painting is not recorded.
  • Ary Scheffer’s Self Portrait at 43 was given to the museum in 1979 in poor condition by individuals who had acquired it during the Second World War.

Addition

The museum re-examined the paintings acquired in the period 1940-1948. Of the paintings that were investigated, 68% no longer have any lacunas in their provenance in the period 1933-1945. The remaining 32% of the paintings still do have lacunas in their provenance in the period 1933-1945. Given this thorough research, however, this does not mean that their provenance is uncertain. This could change in the future with additional research.

This investigation uncovered the following nine paintings with an uncertain provenance:

  • Anonymous (School of Dirck Barendsz), Adoration of the shepherds was acquired from H.A.Wetzlar, but it is unclear how, when, and from whom he acquired it. This painting was part of his collection until 1943.
  • Giacinto Diana, The continence of Scipio was bought during the war from a dealer whose identity is still unknown despite extensive provenance research. Its provenance remains uncertain and therefore the transaction on Capri cannot be verified.
  • Johannes van Dregt, Bacchic Scene was sold at De Zon auction house, Amsterdam, in November 1943. Since it is not known who put the painting up for sale, its provenance is uncertain.
  • Jan Ekels (I), The so-called Boerenverdriet on the Spui in Amsterdam was acquired by R. May, but it is unclear when, where, and from whom. The painting was in Germany in 1928.
  • Govert Flinck, Rembrandt as shepherd with staff and flute. Since it is not known what happened to the painting between 1941 and when it was acquired in September 1942, its provenance is uncertain.
  • Jacob van Loo, Scene with Bacchantes was offered on the German art market in 1931 and only surfaced again in New York in 1942.
  • Paulus Moreelse, Esau selling his birthright. Since it is unclear when, how, and from whom Mr Peters acquired this painting, its provenance is uncertain.
  • Auguste Antoine Joseph Payen, House of the Assistant Resident of Banyuwangi East Java (Jawa Timur) was owned  by the Jewish Jadwiga Vuijk, née Reich Rosenblatt, but since when is unknown. Moreover, it cannot be irrefutably determined whether this transaction with the museum was made voluntarily or fetched a reasonable price.
  • Nicolaas Pieneman, Portrait of a man, perhaps Petrus Augustus de Genestet (1829-1861) was owned by A.J. Rehorst. As it is unclear when, how and from whom he had acquired the painting when he sold it to the museum in wartime, its provenance is uncertain.

The collection of Dr. Fritz Mannheimer

After phase one and the first part of phase two the research team examined the 1,703 objects in the Rijksmuseum that came from the collection of the German Jewish banker Dr. Fritz Mannheimer (Stuttgart 1890 – Vaucresson 1939). Dr. Fritz Mannheimer (hereafter also referred to as Mannheimer) was a vivid collector and bought particularly during the 1930s, therefore the provenances of the objects coming from his collection had to be researched carefully. No previous research into the Mannheimer collection as a whole had been conducted and within two years of in-depth research a comprehensive picture of Mannheimer and his collection could be established.

Mannheimer purchased most of the objects from private individuals or international dealers, but he also bought from German museums and owned many objects from nationalized Russian state collections. Mannheimer acquired objects from Jewish collectors, who were persecuted by the Nazi regime. These objects required a lot of attention and one aimed to pin down when and in which manner they left the Jewish collections and came to Mannheimer.

Out of the 1,703 objects that were subject to this research, 185 were found to have questionable provenances according to the guidelines of the Museale Verwervingen vanaf 1933. These include objects, which were previously in the collection of Franz and Margarete Oppenheimer as well as one object previously in the collection of Maximilian Benedikt Heyum Freiherr von Goldschmidt-Rothschild.

Examples of objects from the Collection of Dr. Fritz Mannheimer:

  • Anonymous, Stand for an altar cross
  • Meissener Porzellan ManufakturMilk jug
  • Meissener Porzellan Manufaktur, Seated figure (Pagoda)

The whole research is documented in the Mannheimer report publicly accessible through the Rijksmuseum website. The results of the research into all the provenances is published under the object data for each individual object on the website of the Rijksmuseum.

Read the research report Mannheimer

Update 2019

The painting by Johann Bernard Klombeek and Eugène Joseph Verboeckhoven, Winter forest scene was possibly owned by the art dealer Wolff. He found himself in difficulty during the war. Until recent it was presumed this painting was part of the Rijksmuseum collection. New evidence has shown, however, this painting belongs to the Cultural Heritage Agency (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed), the successor of the Government department for distributing Art (Dienst 's Rijks Verspreide Kunstvoorwerpen).

Provenance Investigation

Investigators began by consulting internal sources such as inventory books, inventory cards, inventory dossiers, annual reports, collection catalogues (published and unpublished) and the museum archive. Where possible, if the provenance was still unclear, they also inspected the reverse of paintings for notes, labels, seals etc. Where these internal sources failed to establish the provenance of a painting, investigators continued elsewhere.

External sources included press and pictorial archives at RKD, files and reports of missing works in the SNK archive, websites, monographs, exhibition catalogues and other specialised publications. Where investigators looked into certain collectors, dealers or owners, they consulted biographical information in RKD databases, newspapers at Royal Library, personal files at Rijksmuseum’s archive and SNK dossiers (where applicable). The success of these biographical investigations varied. Investigators referred to RKD’s press records, local archives, Adelsbooks and Nederlands Patriciaat and biographical compendia from various countries and periods. All the auction catalogues linked to specific paintings were physically checked at RKD and the Rijksmuseum.

The museum did not confine its investigation to paintings with unclear provenance. Investigators checked the provenance for the years 1933-1945 of all works acquired in 1933-2012. This produced a significant amount of new provenance information, even for items that were not ostensibly considered a priority with regard to the Holocaust period. Besides new data relating to provenance, investigators also discovered information relevant to art history, resulting in new attributions of works mentioned in the investigated sources. A number of paintings were found to have been returned to their owners after the war, before being acquired by the museum. Claims were made regarding various paintings acquired after 1933 and submitted to the Restitutions Committee which awarded the work to the museum in each case.

Information from previous research (report Museum Acquisitions 1940-1948)

View reaction of Rijksmuseum in the report Museale acquisitions 1940-1948 which was published in 1999 in response to the previous museum research.

About this museum and its collection

Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum is the country’s principal museum of Dutch art and history, with a survey of Dutch heritage from the Middle Ages to the present day. Its rich and diverse collection includes paintings, sculpture, applied art, prints and drawings. Highlights of the collection include works by Rembrandt,Vermeer and other famous seventeenth-century Dutch masters.

Objects

Two silver salt cellars

Two silver salt cellars

Artist/ Creator
Johannes Lutma I
Title
Two silver salt cellars
Year
1639
Technique
Silver, parcel gilt
Size
h. 24, b. 12 cm
Inventorynumber
BK 1960-13 a en BK 1960-13 b
Description

Two silver salt cellars, the bowl supported by a boy seated on a dolphin. (Weight 802 grams)

Category
Applied art
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

The salt cellars are probably part of the collection confiscated from the heirs of Emma Budge.

Explanation

These salt cellars are most likely...

more information

Maximilian II Maria Emanuel (1662-1726), Elector of Bavaria, at the Battle of Mohacs against the Turks

Maximilian II Maria Emanuel (1662-1726), Elector of Bavaria, at the Battle of Mohacs against the Turks

Artist/ Creator
Anonymous (copy after Joseph Vivien)
Title
Maximilian II Maria Emanuel (1662-1726), Elector of Bavaria, at the Battle of Mohacs against the Turks
Year
1710-1750
Technique
Oil on copper
Size
65 x 45 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-4016 (NK 1804)
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear when and from whom J.J. Thole acquired this painting, its provenance is uncertain.

Explanation

This painting belongs to the...

more information

Frederik van Os

Pieter Frederik van Os

Artist/ Creator
Anton Mauve
Title
Pieter Frederik van Os
Year
1855
Technique
Oil on paper on panel
Size
20,8 x 17,4 cm
Inventorynumber
Inv. nr. SK-A-4156
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

This painting is included because it belonged to the collection stolen from G.A. van Rede, Bennekom.

Explanation

Mr van Rede registered the...

more information

Salome with the Head of John the Baptist

Salome with the Head of John the Baptist

Artist/ Creator
Jan Adam Kruseman
Title
Salome with the Head of John the Baptist
Year
c. 1861
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
120 x 90 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-5009
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

The provenance of the painting is unclear since the identity of the person who consigned it to Fred. A. van Braam’s auction in 1943 is no longer...

more information

Willem III (1650-1702), Prince of Orange as a Child

Willem III (1650-1702), Prince of Orange as a Child

Artist/ Creator
Adriaen Hanneman
Title
Willem III (1650-1702), Prince of Orange as a Child
Year
1654
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
135 x 95 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3889
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

The provenance of the painting is uncertain, since how and when it passed from the possession of the Hohenzollern family and came to belong to Reinheldt art gallery in...

more information

Self Portrait at 43

Self Portrait at 43

Artist/ Creator
Ary Scheffer
Title
Self Portrait at 43
Year
c. 1838
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
89 x 70 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-4748
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

The provenance is unclear since no information is available about how or when the unknown donor acquired the work during the...

more information

Govert van Slingelandt (1623-90), Lord of Dubbeldam, with his First Wife Christina van Beveren and the Two Sons

Govert van Slingelandt (1623-90), Lord of Dubbeldam, with his First Wife Christina van Beveren and the Two Sons

Artist/ Creator
Jan Mijtens
Title
Govert van Slingelandt (1623-90), Lord of Dubbeldam, with his First Wife Christina van Beveren and the Two Sons
Year
1657
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
99,5 x 86,5 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-4013 (NK 1792)
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear when and from whom J.J. Thole acquired this painting, its provenance is uncertain.

Explanation

This painting belongs to the...

more information

Chariclea

Chariclea

Artist/ Creator
Anonymous (Northern Netherlands)
Title
Chariclea
Year
c. 1660
Technique
Oil on panel
Size
75 x 55 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-4017 (NK2928)
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

The provenance of painting is uncertain since it is unclear when and from whom Vitale Bloch or art dealer D.A Hoogendijk acquired the...

more information

Two Women in Italian Costume

Two Women in Italian Costume

Artist/ Creator
Moritz Calisch
Title
Two Women in Italian Costume
Year
1851
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
118,5 x 90,5 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-4181
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

The provenance of the painting is unclear since the identity of the person who consigned it to Fred. A. van Braam’s auction in 1943 is no longer known. In fact...

more information

Adoration of the shepherds

Adoration of the shepherds

Artist/ Creator
Anonymous (School of Dirck Barendsz)
Title
Adoration of the shepherds
Year
1550-99
Technique
Oil on panel
Size
205 x 142 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3460
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear how, when, and from whom Hans Alfred Wetzlar acquired this painting, its provenance is uncertain. This painting was part of his collection until...

more information

The continence of Scipio

The continence of Scipio

Artist/ Creator
Giacinto Diana
Title
The continence of Scipio
Year
1765-1770
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
63 x 77 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3465
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since this painting was bought during the war from a dealer whose identity remains unknown despite extensive provenance research, its provenance is uncertain....

more information

The so-called Boerenverdriet on the Spui in Amsterdam

The so-called Boerenverdriet on the Spui in Amsterdam

Artist/ Creator
Jan Ekels (I)
Title
The so-called Boerenverdriet on the Spui in Amsterdam
Year
1750-1781
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
40 x 48,5 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3475
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear when, where, and from whom May acquired this painting, and the fact that it was in Germany in 1928, its provenance is...

more information

Rembrandt as shepherd with staff and flute

Rembrandt as shepherd with staff and flute

Artist/ Creator
Govert Flinck
Title
Rembrandt as shepherd with staff and flute
Year
1636
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
74,5 x 64 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3451
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is not known what happened to the painting between 1941 and when it was acquired in September 1942, its provenance is uncertain.

more information

Esau selling his birthright

Esau selling his birthright

Artist/ Creator
Paulus Moreelse
Title
Esau selling his birthright
Year
1609
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
124 x 160,7 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3455
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear when, how, and from whom Mr Peters acquired this painting, its provenance is uncertain.

more information

House of the Assistant Resident of Banyuwangi, East Java (Jawa Timur)

House of the Assistant Resident of Banyuwangi, East Java (Jawa Timur)

Artist/ Creator
Auguste Antoine Joseph Payen
Title
House of the Assistant Resident of Banyuwangi, East Java (Jawa Timur)
Year
1828
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
53 x 65 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3452
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear how and when the Jewish Jadwiga Vuijk, née Reich Rosenblatt, acquired this painting and because it cannot be irrefutably determined whether...

more information

Bacchic Scene

Bacchic Scene

Artist/ Creator
Johannes van Dregt
Title
Bacchic Scene
Year
1780-1807
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
96,5 x 140 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3463
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is not known who put the painting up for auction, its provenance is uncertain.

more information

Scene with Bacchantes

Scene with Bacchantes

Artist/ Creator
Jacob van Loo
Title
Scene with Bacchantes
Year
1653
Technique
Oil on canvas
Size
63 x 55 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3483
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since the painting was offered on the German art market in 1931 and only surfaced again in New York in 1942, its provenance is uncertain.

more information

Portrait of a man, perhaps Petrus Augustus de Genestet (1829-61)

Portrait of a man, perhaps Petrus Augustus de Genestet (1829-1861)

Artist/ Creator
Nicolaas Pieneman
Title
Portrait of a man, perhaps Petrus Augustus de Genestet (1829-1861)
Year
1830-1860
Technique
Oil on panel
Size
40 x 33 cm
Inventorynumber
SK-A-3466
Category
Paintings
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

Since it is unclear when and how the painting had come into the possession of A.J. Rehorst when he sold it to the museum in wartime, its provenance is uncertain.

more information

Anonymous, Stand for an altar cross

Stand for an altar cross

Artist/ Creator
Anonymous, Maasland
Title
Stand for an altar cross
Year
c. 1170
Technique
Bronze
Size
h 16,4 cm × l 14,1 cm × b 13 cm
Inventorynumber
BK-16920
Category
Applied art
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

This stand belonged to Maximilian Benedikt Heyum Freiherr von Goldschmidt-Rothschild.

Explanation

De provenance of this object is unclear,...

more information

Milk jug

Milk Jug

Artist/ Creator
Meissener Porzellan Manufaktur
Title
Milk Jug
Year
Ca. 1730 - ca. 1735
Technique
Porcelain
Size
h 14,6 cm × b 11,9 cm × d 9,5 cm
Inventorynumber
BK-17362
Category
Applied art
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusie

This milk jug belonged to the collectors Franz and Margarete Oppenheimer, a jewish couple.

Explanation 

This object is one of 184 inventory...

more information

Seated figure (Pagoda)

Seated figure (Pagoda)

Artist/ Creator
Meissener Porzellan Manufaktur
Title
Seated figure (Pagoda)
Year
Ca. 1720 - ca 1725
Technique
Hard-paste porcelain
Size
h. 8,2 cm
Inventorynumber
BK-17479
Category
Applied art
Museum
Rijksmuseum

Investigation results

Conclusion

This figure belonged to the collectors Franz and Margarete Oppenheimer, a jewish couple.

Explanation 

This object is one of 184 inventory...

more information