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Tokyo
09-27-2006, 04:09 PM
http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-images/Arts/Arts_/Pictures/2006/09/27/hitler372.jpg

It was always going to be one of Jefferys' more lively sales. The auction house in the pleasant town of Lostwithiel in Cornwall is more used to dealing in odds and ends of furniture, houses and livestock, but yesterday it was offering 21 watercolours and sketches apparently dashed off by Adolf Hitler.
Bidders from Japan, Russia, New Zealand and South Africa turned up to try to pick up a Hitler for their living room walls. Journalists and television crews were there to find out who would shell out a few thousand pounds for such works.

And if the scene wasn't bizarre enough, "comedy terrorist" Aaron Barshak, who gatecrashed Prince William's 21st birthday party, briefly evaded the bouncers to get into the auction room and bid £6m for a painting before being dragged away.

The paintings are said to have been discovered by an elderly Belgian woman in a battered suitcase in a loft. They depict rural landscapes on the border of Belgium and France, where Hitler was based as a young corporal in the first world war.
Last year Jefferys sold a portrait of a Dutch postman attributed to Hitler in an otherwise mundane sale. The Belgian woman heard about the success of the sale and decided to try to cash in her pictures.
But there has been a growing feeling over the past few weeks that the paintings, being sold as "attributed to Hitler", may be fakes. The vibrant market for Nazi memorabilia has certainly led to counterfeit Hitler mementoes being produced.
But that did not seem to put off the bidders who turned up in force to Lostwithiel. The collection sold for £118,000, more than double the estimate. The most expensive lot went for £10,500, a watercolour of the Church of Preux-au-Bois.
But just who was buying the sketches is unclear. One buyer, who identified himself as Carlo from Estonia, said he was working for an east European businessman, whom he would not name. "I had a budget to bid for anything that has Hitler's signature. I have something to take back."
A pencil sketch of a chateau was snapped up by a British businessman, who again preferred to remain anonymous, for £3,800. Another sketch went for £2,600, the buyer explaining: "I bought these on a whim; I hadn't intended to bid.
"I didn't buy them because I admire him. I bought them because they are a piece of history." Jefferys did not seem to mind the controversy, dismissing Mr Barshak's intervention as a "schoolboy prank". It would not stop it holding controversial auctions in the future. "The sale itself went very well - the prices exceeded our expectations," a spokesman said.



Related articles
26.09.2006: Hitler paintings go under the hammer (http://arts.guardian.co.uk/news/story/0,,1881378,00.html)
25.09.2006: Jonathan Jones on Hitler's paintings (http://arts.guardian.co.uk/critic/feature/0,,1880641,00.html)
05.09.2006: Hitler's desk and chair may fetch £500,000 (http://arts.guardian.co.uk/news/story/0,,1864871,00.html)

Rascal
09-28-2006, 03:51 PM
The world would have been a different place if not for hitler being failed at his artistic work.

Tokyo
09-29-2006, 06:01 PM
Hell if Napoleon was born a few years earlier, he would have been born an Italian citizen!

Same with Stalin, if he was born earlier he would have been Iranian!

Rascal
09-29-2006, 10:41 PM
Funny how shiit works out in history.One slight move and everything changes for better/worse.