The Germans confiscated 1280 pictures that the Nazis had largely confiscated from Jews. The owner of the paintings was the son of the half-jewish dealer who worked with the Nazis.
As the customs officers confiscated the works, a distressed Mr. Gurlitt paced restlessly around his previously inviolable domain, muttering over and over to himself, “Now they are taking everything from me,” recalled Ms. Voigt, who was present. “He was mortified,” she said.
In an interview, his first, published on Sunday, Mr. Gurlitt, 80, told the German newsmagazine Der Spiegel that the confiscation of the artwork was a devastating blow — more difficult even than the loss of his sister, Benita, to cancer last year. “Saying goodbye to my pictures was the most painful of all,” he said.
There is some justification on various reasons that he didn’t know what the pictures represented, and who really owned them. One excuse was that Mr. Gurlitt hadn’t watched television for years. Bullshit. I don’t care about his loss.