Liz Taylor gets to keep her Van Gogh
A long legal battle that has been raging for the last three years has come to a close. The famous movie star, Elizabeth Taylor can keep a Van Gogh painting that may have been illegally seized by the Nazis.
Liz Taylor bought “View of the Asylum and Chapel at Saint-Remy,” 1889 oil painting at auction in 1963 for about $257,000. Today the painting is worth many times more, it is estimated in the tens of millions especially in this day and age’s booming art market.
The Orkin family, decendents of a Jewish woman who fled Germany in 1939, sued Taylor in 2004, claiming that the Nazis forced the sale of the painting and thus it should be returned to them under the 1998 U.S. Holocaust Victims Act.
The judge decided to let Liz Taylor keep the painting due to the long time the family waited before filing suit. The judge also commented about the painting’s tangled history with its creator:
“Vincent van Gogh said that paintings have a life of their own that derives from the painter’s soul. The confused and perhaps turbulent history of this painting may prove the truth of his observation.”