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Still Life in an Architectural Setting

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Until 1791, François Emmanuel van Ertborn (b. 1716 - d. 1791), Antwerp; 1791, by descent within the family (?); August 18, 1807, Ertborn sale, Beeckmans, Antwerp, lot 42, to Henri-Joseph Stier d'Aertselaer, Antwerp; July 29, 1822, Aertselaer sale, G. J. Bincken, Antwerp, lot 25, to Paramosky, Vienna. By 1840, Jean Baptiste Puthon, Vienna; probably sold by Puthon to Philipp Dräxler von Carin, Vienna; probably sold by Dräxler von Carin to Baron Samuel von Festetits (b. 1806 - d. 1862), Vienna [see note 1]; March 7 and April 11, 1859, Festetits sale, Vienna, lot 101, to Friedrich Jakob Gsell (d. 1872), Vienna; March 14, 1872, Gsell sale, Plach, Vienna, lot 30, to Nathaniel von Rothschild (b. 1836 - d. 1905), Vienna [see note 2]; by descent to his nephew, Alphonse Rothschild (b. 1878 - d. 1942), Vienna; 1938, seized by Nazi forces for the Führermuseum [see note 3]; December 16, 1943, taken to the Führerbau, Munich (no. 3225) [see note 4] and later moved, through Kremsmünster, Austria, to Alt Aussee [see note 5]; July 19, 1945, collected by the Allies and taken to the Munich Central Collecting Point (no. 4928) [see note 6]; May 11, 1948, released to the United States Forces in Austria; April 12, 1949, returned to the Rothschild family [see note 7]; probably consigned by the Rothschild family to Rosenberg and Stiebel, New York [see note 8]; 1950, sold by Rosenberg and Stiebel to the MFA for $3,000. (Accession Date: September 14, 1950) NOTES: [1] On the provenance of this painting from Puthon to Gsell, see Theodor von Frimmel, "Lexikon der Wiener Gemäldesammlungen" (Munich, 1913), pp. 290, 375-376. Festetits acquired many works of art from Dräxler von Carin, and it is likely that he acquired this painting -- and others from the Puthon collection -- from him as well. [2] According to notes of September 14, 1950 from Hanns Swarzenski in MFA curatorial file. [3] With the Anschluss, or annexation of Austria to Nazi Germany in March, 1938, the possessions Alphonse de Rothschild were seized almost immediately by Nazi forces. This painting appears in a Nazi-generated inventory of 1939 as no. AR (Alphonse Rothschild) 884: "Jan Fyt, Architektur mit Stilleben. Leinwand, 112 x 83." Katalog beschlagnahmter Sammlungen, inbesondere der Rothschild-Sammlungen in Wien, Verlags-Nr. 4938, Staatsdruckerei Wien, 1939, Privatarchiv, reproduced in Sophie Lillie, "Was einmal war: Handbuch der enteigneten Kunstsammlungen Wiens" (Vienna, 2003), p. 1032, no. 884. The painting also appears in an inventory of July 31, 1940 of paintings reserved for the Führermuseum, the art museum Adolf Hitler planned to build in his hometown of Linz, Austria: Verzeichnis der für Linz in Aussicht genommenen Gemälde, p. 4: "Fyt. Architektur mit Jagdstilleben." [4] Hitler used the Führerbau in Munich as a repository for works of art. An inventory of the paintings was drawn up in 1943; its Führerbau inventory number, 3225, is recorded on the reverse of the painting stretcher in chalk and on a label. [5] Many works of art stored elsewhere by the Nazis were moved to the abandoned salt mines of Alt Aussee in Austria, where they would be safe from wartime bombing. This painting first passed through the depot at the monastery of Kremsmünster, where it was numbered K995. This number can also be found on its reverse. [6] Allied troops established collecting points where looted works of art could be identified for eventual restitution to their rightful owners. This painting came to the Munich Central Collecting Point in 1945 from Alt Aussee shipment number 3577, and was numbered 4928, which is recorded on the reverse of the painting stretcher. The Munich Central Collecting Point inventory card is held by the National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Maryland (Property Card 4928; National Archives Record Group 260, Box 501; and National Archives Record Group 260, Entry USACA-USFA; File Rep & Rest. Box 158). [7] See Birgit Schwarz, "Hitlers Museum. Die Fotoalben Gemäldegalerie Linz: Dokumente zum 'Führermuseum'" (Cologne and Weimar, 2004), p. 101, no. II/26. [8] Members of the Rothschild family consigned many objects to Rosenberg and Stiebel in the 1940s and 1950s.

Credit Line

Ernest Wadsworth Longfellow Fund

about 1645


112.4 x 82.9 cm (44 1/4 x 32 5/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Oil on canvas