Picasso, Matisse and Dix Among Works Found in Munich's Nazi Art Stash

Art historian describes 'incredible joy' at seeing previously unknown works among 1,406 found at home of Cornelius Gurlitt

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An art haul confiscated from a Munich flat includes previously unknown works by Marc Chagall and Otto Dix, and original pieces by Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, Bavarian authorities have revealed.

At a press conference in Augsburg, the art historian who has been studying the collection since its discovery gave a first glimpse of the trove, which includes modernist works as well as older pieces dating back as far as the 16th century.

The whereabouts of the 80-year-old owner of the flat, Austrian Cornelius Gurlitt, is not known.

Treasures found in Gurlitt’s flat include works by Franz Marc; Oskar Kokoschka; Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec; Pablo Picasso; Max Liebermann; Ernst Ludwig Kirchner; Max Beckmann; a Canaletto sketch of Padua; a Carl Spitzweg etching of a couple playing music and a Gustave Courbet painting of a girl with a goat.

But art historian Meike Hoffmann, of the Free University of Berlin, said the art world would be particularly excited about the discovery of a Matisse painting from around 1920 and works that were previously unknown or unseen: an Otto Dix self-portrait dated around 1919, and a Chagall gouache painting of a metaphorical scene. Hoffmann said it had been “an incredible feeling of joy” to discover these paintings in good condition.

Customs officials also used the press conference to correct a number of initial press reports. They said the flat had been raided in March 2012, not in early 2011 as Focus magazine reported on Sunday.

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