Religion, Society, and World Relations Faculty of Philosophy

Theft of Cultural Property

The confiscation of Munich, which initiated one of the largest state art thefts in the area of the Old Empire during the NS era, was carried out by the Secret State Police. However, art experts, art dealers and directors of museums (Bavarian State Painting Collections - Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Bavarian National Museum - Bayerisches Nationalmuseum, the urban gallery - Städtische Galerie, the historical city museum - Historisches Stadtmuseum) as well as state, municipal and NSDAP authorities were also involved. The more than 2000 confiscated art objects were later found in a wide variety of places; the spectrum ranged from galleries and museums to the Oberfinanzpräsidium of Munich (Upper Finance Presidium) and the Gauleitung München-Oberbayern (Regional Management of Munich-Upper Bavaria) to the NSDAP party chancellery in Munich. How this happened, what motives and interests were behind it, who profited from it and how those involved and affected talked about it - and remained silent - after the end of the war will be the subject of the research project. Its main objective is to comprehensively research the confiscation action and to place it in its historical context.

Duration
01/2015 - 12/2016

Funding
Landeshauptstadt München :
98 600 Euro

Project management

Prof. Dr. Christiane Kuller
Holder of the professorship Neuere und Zeitgeschichte und Geschichtsdidaktik (Historisches Seminar)

The confiscation of Munich, which initiated one of the largest state art thefts in the area of the Old Empire during the NS era, was carried out by the Secret State Police. However, art experts, art dealers and directors of museums (Bavarian State Painting Collections - Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Bavarian National Museum - Bayerisches Nationalmuseum, the urban gallery - Städtische Galerie, the historical city museum - Historisches Stadtmuseum) as well as state, municipal and NSDAP authorities were also involved. The more than 2000 confiscated art objects were later found in a wide variety of places; the spectrum ranged from galleries and museums to the Oberfinanzpräsidium of Munich (Upper Finance Presidium) and the Gauleitung München-Oberbayern (Regional Management of Munich-Upper Bavaria) to the NSDAP party chancellery in Munich. How this happened, what motives and interests were behind it, who profited from it and how those involved and affected talked about it - and remained silent - after the end of the war will be the subject of the research project. Its main objective is to comprehensively research the confiscation action and to place it in its historical context.

History Politics

Research focus

Religion, Society, and World Relations