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Loss and Return
Lost and Recovered Works from the National Gallery

10.12.2010 to 06.03.2011

Alte Nationalgalerie
Alte Nationalgalerie

The number of works from the National Gallery's collection tragically lost over the course of the Second World War far exceeds 800. Of those, nearly 600 paintings originated from the 19th century alone. This figure roughly equates to a third of the Alte Nationalgalerie's current collection. Over the last few years a growing number of art works suddenly resurfaced on the art market that had, until then, been considered untraceable. We have fortunately now managed to reclaim them for the National Gallery in Berlin.

Among these re-acquisitions were masterpieces by such artists as Carl Blechen, Wilhelm Ahlborn, Ferdinand Waldmüller, Johann Erdmann Hummel and Julius Hübner. The paintings' homecoming will be presented to the public in December in a small, one-room show in the Alte Nationalgalerie. As the question of artefacts lost in the war is a highly topical and frequent subject of discussion, the exhibition will also contain documentary material, including inventory lists, storage lists, documents detailing loans to other institutions and prewar-era photos from the National Museums' archives which together should provide insight into the exciting 'biography' of some of the many lost works of art.