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Sunday 31 August 2014

Museum will return looted Matisse

Published 21/03/2014 | 12:27

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The painting Woman In Blue In Front Of A Fireplace by Henry Matisse was once looted by Hermann Goering (AP/Oystein Thorvaldsen/Henie-Onstad Art Centre)

A Norwegian museum has agreed to return a Matisse once looted by Hermann Goering to the family of Jewish art dealer Paul Rosenberg.

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The 1937 painting, Woman In Blue In Front Of A Fireplace, has been among the highlights of the Henie Onstad Art Centre near Oslo since the museum was established in 1968 through a donation by shipping magnate Niels Onstad and his wife, Olympic figure-skating champion Sonja Henie.

Now worth an estimated 20 million US dollars (£12.1 million), the painting was taken by Goering after Mr Rosenberg fled to New York in 1940, and sold to a Parisian art dealer who was later convicted of dealing in Nazi looted art.

It was acquired from a different French gallery in 1950 by Mr Onstad, who was apparently unaware of its provenance.

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