Weinmuller's Nazi auction catalogues published online

Catalogues recording the sales of art during the Nazi regime at Weinmuller auction house have been published online with the Lost Art Internet Database.

Nazi art
Nazi soldiers outside the Palazzo Venezia in Rome in 1944

Discovered in a cupboard by an auction house employee in 2013, the catalogues span 1936-1945, when Adolf WeinMuller held 33 auctions in both Munich and Vienna selling artworks from Jewish collectors and dealers.

The catalogues record the sale of approximately 34,500 lots, detailing both the consignor and the buyer.

Adolf Weinmuller was a German art dealer who sided with the Nazi party as early as 1931, having dealings with the organisation in charge of suppressing Jewish control of the art trade.

The auctions were held after he bought Hugo Belbing's auction house in Munich and Samuel Kende's in Vienna, with both forced to close due to Jewish ownership. Among Weinmuller's top consumers was Martin Bormann, Hitler's personal secretary.

When confronted with the legendary Monuments Men, Weinmuller told them that all his documents were burned, making it difficult for valuers to trace works even to this day.

The catalogues later went on loan to the Central Institute for Art History in Munich, and have since been bought, with the buyer or buyers remaining anonymous.

The news follows the discovery of 1,500 artworks thought to have been stolen by Nazis surfacing in the home of an elderly man in Germany, with much debate as to their true ownership.

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