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Utopia Talk / Politics / Buy or no buy?
Wed Feb 06 07:01:00
If only they would be all authentic!


Published 20 hours ago

Hitler's drawings, watercolors go on sale in Germany; draws interest from Iranian, Chinese buyers

More than 100 years have passed since an impoverished, homeless, failed art student sought to survive in Vienna by selling his sketches and watercolors for a pittance.

That artist was destined to become one of the most destructive dictators in history, responsible for a war that would cost 75 to 80 million lives, including the genocide of six million Jews.

This Saturday, as an auction demonstrates, there remains a market for Adolf Hitler's artwork, whether it be forged, or authentic.

Auktionhaus Weidler in Nuremberg, Germany, is auctioning 31 drawings and watercolor landscapes of rural Germany attributed to the Nazi dictator. A spokesperson for the auction house said people purchase Hitler’s works because it’s part of history. Auctioneer Kerstin Weidler said the auction house customers come from all over the world, including a museum in Brazil.

One of the works to be auctioned is a nude drawing of Hitler’s niece, Geli Raubel, who lived with him in a spacious, upscale apartment in Munich in 1929. Some historians say they were lovers. Three years later, Raubel was found dead in the apartment with a self-inflicted gunshot wound from Hitler’s pistol, an apparent suicide.

“Many of the buyers come from Arab countries and Iran where anti-Semitism is high, and that may motivate purchases,” said Stefan Koldehoff, cultural editor for German public radio.

Koldehoff said the Chinese are also gobbling up Hitler drawings, perhaps because they have a fascination with him. In Germany, it is legal to sell Hitler paintings provided they do not contain Nazi symbols.

Hitler did most of his artwork in the years between 1908 and 1913 when he wandered about Vienna in a state of abject poverty, often living in squalid homeless shelters. He twice failed the entrance exam to the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts, in 1907 and 1908. His drawing skills were deemed “unsatisfactory.” During these years he eked out a meager living drawing postcard views of Vienna and selling them to tourists.

According to Koldehoff, Hitler had the mechanical skills to draw country scenes and church steeples, but his work lacked originality.

After World War II, American and British soldiers found many Hitler drawings in the ruins of German government buildings. Sotheby’s in London offered Hitler drawings for sale in the 1960’s. Over the years, several auctions have been conducted in England and Germany.

A Hitler sketch can fetch as little as 150 euros (around $170), or as much as 45,000 euros (around $51,600) for a large watercolor.

Nonetheless, there are widespread reports that much of the artwork attributed to Hitler consists of forgeries. Some experts estimate that such fakes constitute as much as 95 percent of the work on the market. According to Koldehoff, no one can say if a landscape that costs 45,000 euros, or other artwork, is by Hitler or by a forger. Asked how auction houses authenticate Hitler’s art, Koldehoff said they designate the work as “probably by Adolf Hitler.”

Certificates of authenticity are often obtained from questionable sources. Koldehoff said a colleague in Holland bought an unsigned drawing at a flea market, added Hitler’s signature, and sent a picture of the painting, with $39.95, to someone in the United States who claims to be a “forensic graphologist.” This graphologist sent back a certificate of authenticity. This story has not been independently verified.

Auctioneer Weidler told Germany’s public international broadcaster Deutsche Welle that the work to be auctioned on Saturday has been authenticated. “We do lighting tests, and we selected them because we believe they are by Hitler,” she said.

Last month, three watercolors attributed to Hitler were seized from the Kloss auction house in Berlin, on suspicions of forgery.

"If you walk down the Seine and see 100 artists, 80 will be better than this," Heinz-Joachim Maeder, a Kloss spokesperson, told Reuters.

He added: "The value of these objects and the media interest is because of the name at the bottom."
Wed Feb 06 10:40:43
I wouldn't buy.
Wed Feb 06 11:26:18
An original AH for only $170? Daemon, send me the link!
Wed Feb 06 11:35:41
Where do you work again, rugian?
large member
Wed Feb 06 11:39:01
Obviously at an art dealership.
Sat Feb 09 18:10:31
Think Jergul might be on to something.

Rugian loves to jizz on an HD tv.
Sat Feb 09 18:11:13
I don't know why I remember that, so don't ask.
Sun Feb 10 04:30:15
So sad!


Sun 10 Feb 2019 05.18 GMT

Artworks allegedly by Adolf Hitler fail to sell at Nuremberg auction

High prices and questions over authenticity scare off buyers at sale of Nazi memorabilia

Five paintings attributed to Adolf Hitler have failed to find buyers at an auction held amid anger at the sale of Nazi memorabilia.

High starting prices of between €19,000 and €45,000 ($21,000 and $50,000), and lingering suspicions about the authenticity of the artworks were thought to have scared off potential buyers at Saturday’s auction in Nuremberg.

The Weidler auction house did not comment on the reasons for the failure but said the paintings could yet be sold at a later date.

Nuremberg’s mayor, Ulrich Maly, had earlier condemned the sale as being “in bad taste”.

Among the items that failed to sell were a mountain lake view and a painting of a wicker armchair with a swastika symbol presumed to have belonged to the late Nazi dictator.

The Weidler auction house held the “special sale” in Nuremberg, the city in which Nazi war criminals were tried in 1945.

Days before the sale a number of the artworks were withdrawn on suspicion they were fakes, with prosecutors stepping in.

Sales of alleged artworks by Hitler – who for a time tried to make a living as an artist in his native Austria – regularly spark outrage that collectors are willing to pay high prices for art linked to the country’s Nazi past.

According to Stephan Klingen of the Central Institute for Art History in Munich, Hitler had the style of “a moderately ambitious amateur” but his creations did not stand out from “hundreds of thousands” of comparable works from the period – making their authenticity especially hard to verify.

The watercolours, drawings and paintings bearing “Hitler” signatures featured views of Vienna or Nuremberg, female nudes and still life works, the auction house said. They were offered by 23 different owners.

Prosecutors have collected 63 artworks from the Weidler premises bearing the signature “A.H.” or “A. Hitler”, including some not slated to go under the hammer.

The Nuremberg-Fuerth prosecutor’s office said it had opened an investigation against persons unknown “on suspicion of falsifying documents and attempted fraud”, chief prosecutor Antje Gabriels-Gorsolke said.

“If they turn out to be fakes, we will then try to determine who knew what in the chain of ownership,” she said.

Weidler said in a statement that the paintings’ withdrawal from sale did “not automatically mean they are fakes”.
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