Rape of Europa by Richard Berge, Bonni Cohen, and Nicole Newnham (2006, 117 min.). The Rape of Europa tells the epic story of the systematic theft, deliberate destruction and miraculous survival of Europe’s art treasures during the Third Reich and the Second World War. In a journey through seven countries, the film takes the audience into the violent whirlwind of fanaticism, greed, and warfare that threatened to wipe out the artistic heritage of Europe. But young art professionals as well as ordinary heroes, from truck drivers to department store clerks, fought back with an extraordinary effort to safeguard, rescue and return the millions of lost, hidden and stolen treasures. Today, the legacy of this tragic history continues to play out as families of looted collectors recover major works of art, conservators repair battle damage, and nations fight over the fate of ill-gotten spoils of war.
Discussion with co-producer Robert Edsel follows screening.
Photo: Adolf Hitler presents Hermann Goering with The Falconer (1880), a painting by the 19th century Austrian academic painter Hans Makart. Hitler bought the painting legitimately from art dealer Karl Haberstock. It is now in the Neue Pinakothek in Munich. Photo Source: Lynn Nicholas