Thursday, May 8, 2014

Finding Nolde - or other art via the Madgeburg registry

Germany took a while to consolidate a central register or co-ordination agency set up in Magdeburg, formerly East Germany, that works mostly on Nazi and World War II art.

Without the find a couple of years ago of a huge trove of art in Munich, Germany, the fading issue of looted, lost, and otherwise displaced art would not have made many headlines in the German mainstream media.

In the wake of the headlines, several large German papers published a link to the Madgeburg agency and its searchable database. A simple search will return items in the categories "search reports" and "found object" reports.

The database contains not only paintings and related items such as sketches and prints but a variety of other types of art, for example art glass. To get to the different types of art, select "Catalogue Search" under the menu item "Database".

You will then be presented with a dropdown menu "Choose a type of object".

At this point, please learn German in a hurry, or open a new window with Google Translate. Despite the website being available in several languages, the underlying database is not, as we say, fully internationalized.

In our test, the selection items were in German only. The "Advanced Search" screen on the other hand does have an English list to choose from.

Here is an example the catalogue search screen in Russian.

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