Confererence text from the UK Government:
Spoliation experts from across the world will gather in London in September for ‘70 Years and Counting: Europe’s final opportunity?’, which is aimed at increasing efforts to return Nazi-looted art to its original owners.
The conference will strengthen partnerships, build greater cooperation on spoliation and examine how the process of returning stolen artworks can be accelerated.
This international conference is the first of its kind in five years and will be held on 12 September 2017 at the National Gallery. The conference is organised by the UK Government and the Spoliation Advisory Panel and is sponsored by the Commission for Looted Art in Europe.
It is estimated that 20 per cent of Europe’s cultural treasures were stolen or plundered by Nazi Germany, most notably from Jewish families, and over 100,000 of these works are still lost, presumed to be in both private and public collections.
The UK’s Spoliation Advisory Panel was established in 2000 to consider claims from anyone who lost possession of a cultural object during the years 1933 to 1945 where that object is now in the possession of a UK collection. The Panel advises on what might be an appropriate solution in response to a claim and its advice is published in a report which is also laid before Parliament. The Panel’s advice is not binding on the parties, though its advice has always been adopted by both parties thus far. Where it upholds a claim, the Panel may recommend the return of the object or the payment of compensation.
To read more about the Panel and to see its Terms of Reference, Rules of Procedure, Guidance for Parties, Membership and copies of all its Reports, click here.
The Commission for Looted Art in Europe was established in London in 1999 as an international non-profit, expert, representative body. It researches, identifies and recovers looted property on behalf of families, communities, institutions and governments worldwide. It negotiates policies and procedures with governments and cultural organisations and promotes the identification of looted cultural property and the tracing of its rightful owners. In 2001 it established the Central Registry of Information on Looted Cultural Property 1933-1945 at www.lootedart.com to fulfil Washington Principle VI which called for the creation of such a repository of information. The Central Registry provides news, information and research from 49 countries and a database of over 25,000 works of art.
To read more about the Commission and its work, click here. To explore the Central Registry, return to the homepage at www.lootedart.com.