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Matisse found in Nazi art hoard was stolen: Experts

Published on Jun 12, 2014 6:22 AM
A reproduction of a painting by French painter Henri Matisse titled 'Seated woman' is seen during a press conference in Augsburg, southern Germany, on Nov 5, 2013. -- PHOTO: AFP

BERLIN (AFP) - A group of experts confirmed on Wednesday that a Matisse painting found in the possession of the reclusive son of a German art dealer linked to Adolf Hitler was "Nazi loot" taken from a Jewish art dealer in Paris.

Matisse's Seated Woman was among a treasure trove of art discovered in the Munich apartment of Cornelius Gurlitt, whose father Hildebrand was tasked by the Nazis with selling artwork stolen from Jewish families in the 1930s and 1940s.

The German government had tasked the experts with settling a dispute over ownership between the heirs of Paris-based art dealer Paul Rosenberg and a second party whose identity has not been revealed.

"Even though it could not be documented with absolute certainty how the work came into Hildebrand Gurlitt's possession, the task force has concluded that the work is Nazi loot and was taken from its rightful owner Paul Rosenberg," Ingeborg Bergreen-Merkel, the head of the task force, said in a statement on Wednesday.

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