The Wall Street Journal reports that the art collection of Cornelius Gurlitt, who died on 6/5/14, has been bequeathed to a museum in Bern. The collection included works looted by the Nazis and ‘assayed’ under the stewardship of Gurlitt’s father, Hildebrand: Matisse, Franz Marc, Monet and Renoir (which last perhaps suggests the basic philistine nature of the national socialists).
German authorities famously carried out a home invasion of Gurlitt’s Augsburg home in 2012 and confiscated the art as, according to the WSJ, “Gurlitt sat shocked in a corner wearing his pyjamas.” This property was never returned to him but the government is acceding to his bequest to send the collection over the border.
Art theft is as old as art but in terms of ownership, possession adds up to 9/10ths. We can do as Bill Bailey suggests and march in to a teller at a Swiss bank declaring a desire to open an account “With Nazi Gold!” or we can admire the mirror held up by German tax authorities to German authoritarianism of an earlier age.
Still on painting, Arthur Boyd’s The Prodigal Son is to go under the hammer in Sydney. Once you compare it with Rembrandt’s effort to render the same biblical tale, or consider any of Boyd’s eye-rolling, stomach-curdling pieces, one dare say better to have this piece go under the landfill.
Tonight (22 November) TVC went to see The Brians at the Promethean, an Adelaide night club in a disused church rendered in the gothic style. Our request for Lou Reed‘s The Day John Kennedy Died, in honour of the date, was ignored, probably correctly in the circumstances but great danceable fun was provided (playlist provided below).
The Brians finished with their homage, Always Look on the Bright Side of Life. But by then, TVC ‘had to zip’. Knock on Wood; The Midnight Hour; Mustang Sally; Suspicious Minds; Walking on Sunshine; Happy; You Make Loving Fun; Superstition; Don’t Stop; Valerie; I Heard it through the Grapevine; Nutbush City Limits; Crazy Little Thing Called Love; Time Warp; Twist and Shout; I Saw Her Standing There; The Letter; Summer of ’69