French government-owned museums will return three paintings that they came to possess after the Nazis stole them from Jews during the Holocaust, France’s minister for culture said.
Minister Aurelie Filippetti identified the three paintings as “Paysage Montagneux” by the Dutch 17th century painter Joos de Momper; a painting of the Madonna and Child, and another unidentified oil portrait of a women. Two of the paintings were in possession of the Louvre Museum and a third was found at the Museum of Dijon, according to the BFM TV television channel.
“I will return them very shortly to the legal beneficiaries of their owners at the time of their dispossession,” Filippetti reportedly said on Jan. 21. She did not reveal the identity of the beneficiaries but the Le Figaro daily reported they were Jewish.
The paintings are part of a list of 2,000 objects of art flagged as stolen by the Nazis that are in the possession of French cultural institutions, according to a report on the France3 television network. In 2013, French authorities returned seven artworks to descendants of Jews who had lost the objects during the Holocaust.
France has already returned approximately 65,000 works of art and other objects stolen by the Nazis to their rightful owners, Le Figaro reported.