Provenienzen Kunsthistorische Forschungsstätte Paris

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The Johannes Gutenberg University has an extensive collection of catalogues of the Parisian auction houses Hôtel Drouot and the Georges Petit Gallery from 1855 to 2013, the majority of the partially annotated auction catalogues, together with other German and French language specialist publications, come from the library of the former Art History Research Centre in Paris (1942-44). The books were transferred to the Department of Art History Mainz in the course of the refoundation of the university in 1946.

In the collection of French language catalogues from the Hôtel Drouot, there are also booklets without the KHF stamp. Thus, these volumes cannot be clearly attributed to the provenance of the Kunsthistorische Forschungsstätte Paris. However, the research of the project work revealed a high probability which speaks in favour of an attribution, since one of the original packing lists of the transport crates produced at that time contains an item of over 300, unspecified, catalogues from that auction house. Furthermore, some catalogues from other auction houses can be found without a stamp, whose exact provenance must remain unclear, but whose context of discovery also speaks for an attribution.

As part of the academic project The Provenance of the Mainz Book Collection from the Kunsthistorische Forschungsstätte Paris (1942-44), which has been supported by the Deutsches Zentrum Kulturgutverluste in Magdeburg since January 2017, the auction catalogues are now being successively digitised, thus facilitating access for research. The project has been extended by half a year, until 30.6.2019.