Cerruti Collection Pays Heirs for Stolen Painting

July 30 2020

Image of Cerruti Collection Pays Heirs for Stolen Painting

Picture: ArtNews

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Cerruti Collection in Turin has paid out an undisclosed sum to keep Jacopo di Arcangelo's, known as del Sellaio, Madonna and Child with the Young St John and Two Angels (pictured). The painting, which was owned the art dealer Gustav Arnes, was seized by the Nazis during the annexation of Austria in 1938. By this time it had descended with Arnes's heirs into the Unger collection. The painting had passed through several dealers hands during the twentieth century and had sold at Christie's in London as recently as 1985 before entering the collection of the Villa Cerruti.

Unger's daughter, who is 93 and remembers seeing the painting as a child, is quoted:

At almost 93, I had lost hope that this beloved Italian Renaissance painting belonging to my parents would ever resurface. I am pleased not only that the Cerruti Foundation has reached an equitable agreement with the Unger family heirs, including a full account of the painting’s troubled history, but also that I might yet see the work itself in the Castello di Rivoli Museum in my lifetime.

This quote contains an interesting detail of the story. One stipulation of the heirs, as part of the monetary agreement, is that the painting's murky history should be published in any future catalogue notes.

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