Hitler's de Heem Joins Stellar Group of Getty Loans
|Jan Davidsz. de Heem. A Banquet Still Life, mid 1660s. The Klesch Collection
A spectacular Banquet Still Life by Jan Davidsz. de Heem, coveted by Adolf Hitler and recently restituted, is now on loan to the Getty Museum from the private Klesch collection.
In 1941 the Nazi state compelled Amsterdam Jewish collectors Jacob and Henriette Lierens to sell the Banquet Still Life. It was then intended for Hitler's planned Führermuseum. Recovered by the monuments men, the de Heem hung in Utrecht's Centraal Museum for decades after the war. It was returned to the Lierens family only in 2019. Christies London auctioned the painting last July for £3.14 million. The current owners, Gary and Anita Klesch, have a wide-ranging set of European paintings and have placed some on long-term loan to museums.
The de Heem heads a stellar group of painting loans now at the Getty, including the Gainsborough Going to Market (mentioned in a recent post) and pictures by Rubens, Millet, and Monet.
|Thomas Gainsborough, Going to Market, Early Morning, 1773. Private collection
|Rubens, Holy Trinity (1620, Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp) and The Entombment (about 1612, Getty Museum)
A workshop Rubens Holy Trinity from Antwerp's Royal Museum of Fine Arts now shares a wall with the Getty's The Entombment. Both are altarpieces of comparable size, built around a foreshortened Christ. As juxtaposed, they offer a teachable moment in studio v. autograph Rubens.
LACMA has lent the Getty its Millet Norman Milkmaid. It's not quite a "guest masterpiece," as other construction loans have been billed, but its heroic worker makes a fitting companion to the Getty's Man With a Hoe. With the Milkmaid in near-silhouette, and probably darker than when it left Millet's easel, it has always been a "difficult" picture at LACMA. Under the Getty's skylights, it looks more luminous than I've ever seen it.
|Jean-Francois Millet, A Norman Milkmaid at Gréville, 1871. LACMA
The Monet loan is a full-size oil sketch for a section of the Water Lilies panorama now in the Orangerie, Paris.
|Claude Monet, Weeping Willow and the Water-Lily Pond, about 1916-1917. Thames Art Investment Fund LLC