Moderna Museet in Stockholm, Sweden’s most prominent museum of modern and contemporary art, is involved in a dispute centred around an artwork obtained in Nazi Germany. The painting by Oskar Kokoschka originates from a Jewish art dealer and art collector. His heirs now demand that the painting will be returned.
Many Jewish families lost valuable art collections in 1930's Germany. The Nazi art plunder took many different forms, including extortion, confiscation and forced donations. The looted items would eventually appear at museums and in private collections around the world. In recent decades, extensive efforts have been made to return stolen artworks to their rightful owners.
Sweden has hitherto only restored one item, a painting by Emil Nolde that Moderna Museet returned to a Jewish family in 2009. Moderna Museet fought a long battle to keep the Nolde painting, and the museum's actions raised criticism both in Sweden and internationally.