The Russian Ministry of Culture initiated the Internet Project 'Restitutsiya' in 2003. The aim of the project is to provide information about cultural property taken by German troops from the territory of the USSR, on the one hand, and about cultural property taken by the Soviet Trophy Brigades during and after the Second World War and now held in Russian museums, galleries and archives, on the other. The information is accessible on a homepage and structured according to three research subcategories. Comprehensive object information, including images, on cultural property removed from Russian institutions is available in both English and Russian. Comprehensive object information on looted artworks and books held in Russia as well as information on legal aspects of the restitution of cultural property which was moved to Russia is accessible in Russian only. For research in these categories a basic knowledge of Russian is necessary.
1. Anons/Announcement (in Russian only)
This section contains online documents on the laws and legal possibilities of restitution of looted cultural property held in Russia. Detailed information on the following restitution cases and decrees is accessible in Russian:
· 11 March 2001 - The following decrees are related to the foundation of an 'All-Russia council for cultural property transferred to Russia after the Second World War and now held on the territory of the Russian Federation':
· 5 June 2001 - Legal papers on the restitution of the General State Archives of the Netherlands which were stored in the Russian Military Archive in Moscow and returned to the Netherlands in 2002:
http://www.lostart.ru/page108.php (detailed list of the archival records)
· 7 December 2001 - Legal papers on the restitution of the General State Archives of Belgium which were stored in the Russian Military Archive in Moscow and returned to Belgium in 2002:
· 16 December 2002 - Legal papers on the restitution of the General State Archives of the Netherlands which were stored in the Russian Military Archive in Moscow and returned to the Netherlands in 2002:
· News and digital resources referring to the restitution of the Captain Baldin Collection are provided on http://www.lostart.ru/page1_1.php. The Soviet Trophy Brigades looted this Collection, consisting of 362 drawings and two paintings, from the depot of the Kunsthalle Bremen. After promising the return of the artworks to Bremen for 2003, Russian officials stopped the transfer, on the grounds that some legal issues were not fully clarified. A digitised version of the Collection is accessible at http://www.muar.ru/ve/2003/bremen/index.htm.
2. Utrachennye Tsennosti/Lost Values (in Russian and English)
The Ministry of Culture has published several catalogues listing artworks, books and archival records which were looted from Russian museums, libraries and archives during and after the Second World War. The catalogues have been digitised and are accessible under 'Utrachennye Tsennosti/ Lost Values':
3. Peremeshchennye Tsennosti/ Moved Values ( in Russian only)
The category 'Peremeshchennye Tsennosti/ Moved Values' contains digitised information on cultural property looted from other European countries and brought to Russia by the Soviet Trophy Brigades during and after the Second World War. Online catalogues in Russian are available for objects held at the following museums, archives and libraries in Russia:
Note: Some of the institutions above are still working on the digitalisation of their records.
Department for the Preservation of Cultural Valuables
Ministry of Culture
7, Kitaigorodskii Proesd
Tel.: 007 095 928 5750
Restitution Internet Project
<http://www.lostart.ru/>, accessed 16 March 2004.