Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Pisa's Camposanto Monumentale, destroyed by bombing and subsequent fire in 1944. The rubble in the middle photo are the frescos that crumbled and fell off the walls. Restoration is still in progress.

The Louvre galleries, emptied of all artworks in order to keep them from the Nazi invaders.

Lately I've been amazed at all of the little coincidences that I've noticed around me. For example, just last night I got around to watching the documentary "The Rape of Europa," from my Netflix instant queue. The film documents the massive art theft and looting that took place in Europe during WWII, much of it in the hands of Nazi's who were under orders to collect specific works of art for Hitler and Goering's personal collections and for Hitler's planned art museum that he dreamed of building in Linz, Austria. He envisioned the aggrandizing of Linz, his home town, to be one of his great legacies, and a key element was the monumental museum envisioned becoming the greatest in the world.

The movie had been in my queue for months, but last night it felt like exactly what I wanted to see. Then this morning, when I opened my iGoogle homepage, one of the NPR headlines that are right at the top announced, "Veteran's Souvenir Turns Out To Be Hitler's Art Book," one of many of the volumes that Hitler had made cataloging the art that he wanted to acquire for his museum. Just another little coincidence.

I highly recommend this film.

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