The European Art Sale

The European Art Sale

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 433. Der Grossvater (The Grandfather).

Property from the Descendants of David Goldmann

Johann Matthias Ranftl

Der Grossvater (The Grandfather)

Lot Closed

October 25, 02:33 PM GMT


6,000 - 8,000 USD

Lot Details


Property from the Descendants of David Goldmann

Johann Matthias Ranftl


1805 - 1854

Der Grossvater (The Grandfather)

Signed and dated Ranftl1852 (lower right)

oil on panel

panel: 17⅛ by 14⅝ in.; 43.4 by 37.1 cm.

framed: 27 by 25 in.; 68.5 by 63.5 cm.

David Goldmann, Vienna

Seized from the above by Hitler's agents and allocated in the central depot of the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna (inv. D.G. 3), where it was reserved for the Führermuseum

Transferred to Altausse (inv. no. 2663) for the Kunstmuseum Linz

Recovered by the Allied Forces on 17 October 1945 and sent to the Munich Central Collecting Point (inv. no. 9878)

Given over to the Austrian Government Kremsmünster depot (inv. no. K1331) on 25 April 1946

Restituted to David Goldmann

Thence by descent to the present owner

A note about the provenance:

The present lot comes from the noteworthy collection of David Goldmann, an Austrian businessman who fled his home country with his family in 1938 after the annexation of Austria to Nazi Germany. Goldmann amassed a significant fine and decorative arts collection consisting of Italian, Northern and Austrian paintings as well as Viennese porcelain and furniture. Soon after the Anschluss, the Gestapo deemed Goldmann’s apartment and contents as 'enemy property'.1 The most valuable items of the group were removed and reserved for Hitler’s Führermuseum while the rest were auctioned off by the Dorotheum. 

The reverse of the painting memorializes this complicated period of their history with labels noting each depot and storage facility the paintings moved to while under German control. After being taken to the central depot of the Kunsthistoriches Museum, the paintings were then stored in the Altaussee salt mine, which was then seized by the U.S. Army on May 8, 1945, and the artworks transferred to the Munich Central Collecting Point marking the beginnings of the restitution process. Goldmann managed to successfully have most of these items returned to him in New York by the late 1940s. The paintings and drawings have remained in the family since this time.

1. A. Reininghaus, Recollecting. Raub und Restitution, exhibition catalogue, Vienna 2009, p. 133.