Just didn’t pick it up again – two flower still lifes in Braunlage (Germany)

Source: Lostart/Town Hall Braunlage

Source: Lostart/Town Hall Braunlage

That provenance research deals with very different starting points, shows the case of the two images of Jacob Caproens that are at the moment in the council chamber of the town hall of Braunlage (Germany). And this not just since yesterday: The images “always” hung in the town hall without a precise origin known to the authorities. Some time ago the mayor began to reconstruct the history of the two still lifes. A Braunlage citizen remembered that these pictures have been left behind by a German officer after the World War II in Braunlage at the Hotel “Zum Braunen Hirschen” – his promise to pick them up later again the unknown soldier did not fulfill. Whether he was fleeing from the allies, or came as wounded to the hospital city Braunlage, is not reconstructable. The Hotel “Zum Braunen Hirschen” also no longer exists. In the 1960s the owner gave the paintings to the then mayor, who hung them on the walls of the town hall.

During the research for the paintings’ history quickly popped the suspicion of stolen art, since on one backside a label of the Dutch restorer Martin de Wild is attached – de Wild worked closely with Kajetan Mühlmann, which in turn had a not insignificant proportion of the Nazi art looting in the occupied territories, among others in the Netherlands. Have the paintings been stolen there? The investigation will show it.

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