We'll be supplying the books as Mary Lane discusses Hitler's Last Hostages: Looted Art and the Soul of the Third Reich at the Highland Park Library.
In 2013, the German government confiscated roughly 1,300 works by Matisse, Monet, and other masters from the Munich apartment of Cornelius Gurlitt, the reclusive son of one of Hitler's primary art dealers. Lane presents the story of those works of art, their theft, and ther long restitution. Her reporting on this hidden treasure trove of art made front page news in the Wall Street Journal. The book is the story of Hitler's obessions with art, how it fueled his vison of a purfified Nazi state, and the fate of the artwork that was hidden, stolen, or destroyed to "cleanse" German culture. The story of art is integral to the story of the rise of Nazi Germany. Htiler was obsessed with art - in particular, the aesthetic of a purified regime, scoured of "degenerate" influences that characterized Germany during the 1920s and 1930s.
"Mary M. Lane skillfully chronicles the saga of a huge trove of art that had seemingly disappeared during World War II and the Holocaust. It's a gripping tale punctuated by plunder, profiteering, and self-serving rationalizations. Most chillingly, the outright deceptions continued long after the collapse of Hitler's Third Reich."—Andrew Nagorski, author of 1941: The Year Germany Lost the War and Hitlerland
Books will be for sale and the event will conclude with a book signing
Mary M. Lane is a nonfiction writer and journalist specializing in Western art, Western European history, and anti-Semitism. Lane received one of five Fulbright Journalism Scholarships at 22 years old, gained international recognition as the chief European art reporter for the Wall Street Journal, and published numerous exclusive Page One articles on the art trove of Hildebrand Gurlitt. Since leaving the Journal, Lane has been a European art contributor for the New York Times. She splits her time between Berlin and Virginia.
Adolf Hitler's obsession with art not only fueled his vision of a purified Nazi state--it was the core of his fascist ideology. Its aftermath lives on to this day.