August 1, 2011
Nazi-looted painting of Warsaw Ghetto life returned to Poland
A Nazi-looted painting depicting Jewish life in the Warsaw Ghetto was returned to Poland.
“Jewish Woman Selling Oranges,” a 19th-century oil-on-canvas work, was one of several by Polish artist Aleksandr Giermyski depicting Jewish life in the ghetto.
The painting, which was believed to have been stolen from the National Museum in Warsaw in 1944 near the end of the Nazi occupation, was discovered in a small auction last November in Buxtehude, Germany. It was withdrawn from sale after Polish authorities intervened. The authorities then negotiated with its owner, a German citizen, for the painting’s sale to Poland.
In the painting, a woman in a red shawl is carrying two baskets filled with oranges against a foggy Warsaw skyline.
Giermyski, a Polish national hero, appears on the side of some two zloty coins.