Nazi-looted work found in London to be returned to Montreal

CBC News 7 December 2007

A Canadian foundation set up to recover Nazi-looted works once owned by Montreal art dealer Max Stern has recovered a 17th-century Dutch painting.

The Max Stern Art Restitution Project announced Thursday it has located a landscape by Jan de Vos the First called An Extensive Landscape with Travellers on a Track Near a Walled Town with a Castle and Church, a Village Beyond.

Stern, a German-Jew who fled Germany in 1937, lost 250 European masterpieces confiscated or sold by force by the Nazis before the Second World War.

Stern came to Canada in 1941. In 1947, he and his wife, Iris Stern, bought the Dominion Gallery in Montreal and made it a focal point for art collecting.

When he died in 1987, Stern named Concordia University, McGill University and Hebrew University of Jerusalem the beneficiaries of his estate.

The executors have set up the Max Stern Art Restitution Project to help track down the works taken by the Nazis.

Christie's auction house helped locate the de Vos painting, currently being exhibited in a London gallery.

The oil-on-canvas work will eventually be returned to Montreal.

The foundation is working with dealers around the world and with databases of looted art to recover the works.

In February, it found a Portrait of Jan van Eversdyck, by Flemish-born Nicolas Neufchatel, in a collection in Spain.

It has recovered several other works and has started legal procedures to recover others.
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