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‘Restoring A Legacy’: Artwork, Once Stolen By Nazis, To Be Displayed At MFA

Carnet de bal, about 1765. Agate, gold, enamel. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Carnet de bal, about 1765. Agate, gold, enamel. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Bettina Burr, vice president of the board of trustees and museum representative to the Foundation for the Arts, Nagoya. January 26, 2015. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Bettina Burr, vice president of the board of trustees and museum representative to the Foundation for the Arts, Nagoya. January 26, 2015. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Starting Sunday, visitors to Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts will be able to view almost 80 European decorative arts, prints, drawings and rare books that will be on display together for the first since they were stolen by the Nazis in 1938.

They’re among 186 objects being donated to the museum by the heirs to Bettina Looram de Rothschild, of the Austrian branch of the Rothschild dynasty, which had a powerful hand in the banking, mining and railroad industries in the 17th century through 20th centuries.

The family also accumulated one of Europe’s most impressive art collections, but in 1938 the Nazis annexed Austria and the Rothschilds were dispossessed of their assets by the Third Reich.

It’s taken generations to recover the artwork, but Bettina Burr — the daughter of Bettina Looram de Rothschild — is now shepherding this gift to the MFA.

“Restoring a Legacy: Rothschild Family Treasures” will be on display at the MFA from March 1 to June 21.

Guest

Bettina Burr, an heir of Bettina Looram de Rothschild and vice president of the MFA’s board of trustees.

More

The ARTery: MFA Receives Trove Of Art Seized By The Nazis

  • “The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston is receiving a major gift of 186 works seized by Nazi forces in 1938.”

The Boston Globe: Nazi-Looted Rothschild Art Goes To MFA

  • “Heirs donate trove of works after long effort of recovery.”

Photos

Portrait of Emma Hart, later Lady Hamilton George Romney (English, 1734–1802). Oil on canvas. Promised gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Portrait of Emma Hart, later Lady Hamilton George Romney (English, 1734–1802). Oil on canvas. Promised gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Art Deco platinum, carved emerald and diamond brooch about 1937 platinum, white gold, emeralds and diamonds. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Art Deco platinum, carved emerald and diamond brooch about 1937 platinum, white gold, emeralds and diamonds. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Souvenir notebook with pen. 19th century. Gold, lacquer, mother of pearl. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Souvenir notebook with pen. 19th century. Gold, lacquer, mother of pearl. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Bonbonniere mounted with a timepiece. John and George Hannett (English, active in London, about 1730-90) about 1765. Agate and gold. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Bonbonniere mounted with a timepiece. John and George Hannett (English, active in London, about 1730-90) about 1765. Agate and gold. Gift of the heirs of Bettina Looram de Rothschild. (Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)


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