Grabar et al.: A meeting of expert architects on the question of methods for evaluating architectural monuments (1943)

The debate on the selection of objects of art intended to compensate for the cultural losses of the USSR had been discussed at various official levels several years before the end of World War II. In 1943 the academician Igor Grabar initiated a discussion about so-called »potential equivalents«. It was assumed that Soviet art historians would compose a lists of art works from Germany and the Allies for »restitution in kind«. A transcript of the meeting of Soviet architects in Moscow in January of 1943 is one of the earliest documents demonstrating that the Soviet authorities above all lacked a clear concept for an evaluation process, both with regard to Soviet and foreign art objects. However, in 1945 Josef Stalin issued official decrees ordering the complete removal of cultural property from occupied Eastern European and German territories, and by 1946 the idea of »potential equivalents« was forgotten.

commented by Anna Pushakova

Original text    Translation    Brief biography    Commentary    Literature

Стенограмма совещания экспертов-архитекторов по вопросу методов оценки архитектурных памятников (19/1–1943)

source: State Archive of the Russian Federation (GARF) f. Р-7021, op. 121, d. 17, l. 23–35.

[…]

Грабарь: Нет каких-нибудь вопросов еще?

Машков: Есть определенное время на составление стоимости разрушения, которое сделали немцы или нет? Когда это должно быть кончено?

Грабарь: Как можно скорее.

Машков: […] Меня интересует особо вопрос – это вопрос о стоимости уникальных наших памятников. Ведь оценить в рублях многие памятники совершенно невозможно. Ну, скажем, возьмем мы Спас-Нередицу [Церковь Спаса на Нередице, православная церковь, построенная в 1198 году, расположенная на линии фронта между 1941 и 1943 годами]. Малый объем, а стенопись XII века, как ее оценить, которую мы, может быть, не увидим в Европе! Это уника, ее ни на какие деньги мы восстановить не можем. Может быть, в этих случаях следует от немцев потребовать возмещение тоже художественным произведением такой же ценности. Они у нас свезли очень много вещей, можно вернуть то, что цело.

Грабарь: Вы ломитесь в открытые двери. Этот вопрос решен в положительном смысле, мы над этим работаем. Существует поручение Чрезвычайной Государственной Комиссии выдвигать эквиваленты. Они выдвигаются, ежедневно эта работа происходит. Я над этим работаю и профессор Лазарев. Выдвигаются величайшие памятники из музеев Германии и сателлитов. Вопрос, который встал только недавно после падения Италии, заключается в том, что можно ли из Италии что-нибудь выдвигать, поскольку она стала нашим союзником. Этот вопрос не нашей компетенции и будет нам разъяснен. Но вся эта работа уже происходит. В Москве, вероятно, будет музей, которого не было до сих пор в мире. Но вы затронули другой вопрос на конкретном примере Спас-Нередицы. Там живопись и живопись мирового и уникального порядка. Дело в том, что самым простым было бы, если бы можно было взамен такого памятника, как Спас-Нередица, взять да и привезти какой-то Реймский собор и т.д. Это немыслимо, поэтому придется компенсировать при помощи каких-то Сикстинских мадонн и т.д. И как только вы встанете на эту почву, так встретитесь с необычайно трудным вопросом о расценке. Все начинают обыкновенно рассуждение по данному вопросу так: вообще расценивать нельзя, нет цены. Но надо же ее назвать, потому что иначе ничего не выйдет. Если мы за Нередицу потребуем 10 Сикстинских мадонн, то они должны быть расценены. Мне уже пришлось заниматься расценкой живописи Спас-Нередицы, так как это встает на нашем пути неизбежно. Мы обязаны расценивать, но когда мы начинаем расценивать, оказывается, что не выходит, выходит мало. Как это можно расценивать? В европейских музеях существуют фрески, фрагменты фресок. Замечательная есть в Лейпцигском музее фреска Пинтуриккио, примерно, с этот шкаф величиной, вывезенная из Италии. Есть Кайзер Фридрих, целый потолок Тьеполо. Мы можем его вывезти, известно, за сколько это куплено до первой империалистической войны. Если бы разбить на отдельные части все стены Нередицы, то мы получим цифры, но, само собой разумеется, что эти цифры не будут полностью отвечать той оценке, которая должна быть. Почему? Потому, что то – все фрагменты, а это единое целое, небывалое, неповторимое, и как мы дошли до момента, что это гораздо больше, так и кончено – не найдешь метода, что же гораздо большее. Но что это гораздо большее в 2-3, в 5 раз – это несомненно. Если бы Нередица существовала в Германии, то какие-нибудь американские миллиардеры ее перевезли бы к себе целиком. Они бы никаких денег не пожалели. Из Германии, Италии, Франции американцы увозили целые замки. У нас тут есть оценки, из германских архивов, газет можно было бы достать. Но сейчас мы не можем сделать. Но что касается живописи Спас-Нередицы, то пока не найден метод. Если кто-нибудь может из вас подсказать, пожалуйста. […] Архитектурных эквивалентов нет. Пергамский алтарь – попробуйте расценить и подумайте: здесь Пергамский алтарь, а тут Нередица. Выходит или нет? На Западе скажут, не выходит, и мы скажем – не выходит. Они скажут по одной причине, и мы по одной. Мы скажем наше дороже, они скажут их дороже. Я точно знаю западно-европейские круги и знаю, как там расценивается. Как мы не ценим нашего Сурикова, там его ни в грош не ставят и ни одного портрета Токэ не дадут за Сурикова. Не дошло русское искусство до сознания Западной Европы, как не доходила литература. […]

Щусев: Было ли учтено то, что спрашивали французы с немцев по первой мировой войне за Реймский собор и т.д. или никаких сведений не имелось? […]

Грабарь: Теперь по вопросу, затронутому Алексеем Викторовичем, о Версальском договоре. Мы несколько месяцев занимаемся этим делом, но, увы, воз и ныне там, так как во всей Москве не оказалось нигде никаких документов – ни в Ленинской библиотеке, ни в библиотеке Наркоминдела. […] мне известно, что там отдельные стекла Реймского собора, живопись на стекле были расценены. Там же по Версальскому дворцу было расценено целый ряд объектов. Нам надо получить эти расценки. Поэтому я на прошлом заседании Бюро экспертизы предложил считать, что те расценки, которые мы предлагаем, надо считать условными, впредь до получения точных расценок версальского времени для того, чтобы мы могли оперировать этими расценками, чтобы нам за »круглым столом« не сказали, что же вы за такие-то разбитые окна требуете столько-то, а там их было не 20, а 300, и за них меньше спрашивали. Мне точно известно, что на Версальском конгрессе Ллойд Джорд высмеивал Клемансо и говорил – вы спросите еще что-то с немцев, спросите еще с них сколько-то миллионов за разрушенный птичник и т.д. Он просто издевался в частном порядке на заседании. Там было все точно и нам необходимо это иметь. Я бы предложил считать, что все это условные расценки до того момента, когда мы не получим что-то другое. Тогда мы все перестроим, но с учетом национального ущерба и ущерба народной гордости. […] Во что бы то ни стало получить Версальский договор. […] Если мы не получим через месяц, то будет поздно, мы можем быть в смешном виде и выставить Советский Союз на той конференции в этом виде. Вы понимаете, какое это ответственное дело.

Щусев: Может быть, просто один Реймский собор, как он был расценен. Нам надо только принцип расценки, это нам страшно облегчит.

Грабарь: Принцип вытекает из самой расценки. Если мы получим только принцип, мы можем не расценить.

[…]

Transcript of the meeting of expert architects on the question of methods for evaluating architectural monuments on 19/11943

translated by Anna Pushakova

Grabar: Are there any other questions?

Mashkov: Is there a particular deadline for adding up the value of the damage that the Germans did, or not? When must it be completed?

Grabar: As soon as possible.

Mashkov: […] I am particularly interested in one question – this is a question about the cost of our unique monuments. Indeed, it is absolutely impossible to evaluate many monuments in rubles. Well, let’s say, we take the Spas-Nereditsa [The Saviour Church on Nereditsa (Russian: Церковь Спаса на Нередице), an orthodox church built in 1198, located on the front line between 1941 and 1943 and destroyed]. A small building, but painted with frescoes in the XIIth century, how to evaluate it? We may not find it in Europe! It is unique; we cannot restore it for any money. Maybe in these cases, it is necessary to demand compensation from the Germans, also a work of art of the same value. They have taken a lot of things from us, and they can return what has survived.

Grabar: You are preaching to the converted [in original text: »smashing into open doors«]. This issue was resolved positively, and we are working on it. There is an instruction from The Extraordinary State Commission to put forward equivalents. They are putting them forward on a daily basis. I am working on this and professor Lazarev, too. The most significant monuments from the museums of Germany and the Allies are being put forward. The question that arose only recently after the fall of Italy is whether it is possible to put anything forward from Italy since it has become our ally. This question is not within our competence and will be clarified to us. But all this work was already carried out. In Moscow, there will probably be a museum of a kind that has not existed until now in the world.

But you raised another question about the specific example of the Spas-Nereditsa. There is a painting, and this painting is unique to the world. The fact is that it would be easiest if it were possible to replace such a monument as the Spas-Nereditsa by merely taking and bringing in some Reims Cathedral, etc. It is unimaginable, so you have to compensate with some Sistine Madonnas, etc. And as soon as you reach this point, you will encounter an extraordinarily tricky question of pricing. Everyone usually begins their arguments concerning the issue as such: in general, it is impossible to evaluate so there can be no price. But we must name a price; otherwise, this isn’t going to work. If we demand ten Sistine Madonnas for the Spas-Nereditsa, they [the Madonnas] should be evaluated.

I have already had to deal with the pricing of the painting of the Spas-Nereditsa since inevitably this gets in the way. We are obliged to evaluate, but when we begin to evaluate, it turns out that it does not work, it turns out very little [money]. How can this be evaluated? In European museums, there are frescoes, fragments of frescoes. A magnificent Pinturicchio fresco, about the size of this cabinet, is in the Leipzig Museum, taken from Italy. There is the whole ceiling by Tiepolo in Kaiser Friedrich [Bode-Museum]. We can take it out, we know for how much it was bought before the first imperialist war. If all the walls of the Nereditsa were divided into separate fragments, we would get figures, but it goes without saying that these figures will not fully correspond to an appropriate estimate. Why? Because they all are fragments, and this was a single whole, unprecedented, unique, and when we get to the point that it is much more, then it’s over – you will not apply a method to find, what is much more then? But that it is much more – two, three, five times more – this is without doubt.

If Nereditsa existed in Germany, then some American billionaires would transport it to their [state] entirely. They would spare no expense. Americans took away whole castles from Germany, Italy, France. We have estimates here from the German archives, [figures from] newspapers could be found. But right now we cannot do it. As for the painting of the Spas-Nereditsa, the [appropriate] method has not yet been found. If anyone of you can suggest something, please do do. […] There are no equivalents in architecture. Pergamon Altar – try to evaluate it and think: here is the Pergamon Altar, and here is Nereditsa. Does it work or not? In the West they will say, it does not work, and we will say, it does not. They will say so for one reason, and we will say so for another. We will say ours is more valuable, and they will say theirs is more valuable. I know the Western European circles very well and I know how things are evaluated there. No matter how much we value our Surikov, they won’t give a penny for him, and they won’t give us a single portrait of Tocqué for Surikov. Russian art has not reached the consciousness of Western Europe, as Russian literature did not reach it. […]

Shchusev: Was it taken into account that after the First World War the French asked the Germans for Reims Cathedral, etc.? Or there was no information? […]

[…]

Grabar: Now to the question raised by Alexey Viktorovich, about the Versailles Treaty. We have been doing this for several months, but, alas, it’s still there, since there were no documents anywhere in Moscow – neither in the Lenin Library nor in the library of the Commissariat of Foreign Affairs. […] I know that they evaluated separate glass panels, painting on glass from Reims Cathedral. Also, in Versailles palace, several objects were estimated. We need to get these figures.

Therefore, at the last meeting of the Bureau of Expertise, I suggested that the figures we offer should be considered conditional until we get the exact prices established during the time of Versailles, so that we can operate with these prices, so that they wouldn’t tell us at the »round table« that you demand so much for just some broken windows, and [in Reims Cathedral] there were not twenty, but three hundred, and they asked less  for them. I know for sure that at the Versailles Congress, Lloyd Jord [George] laughed at Clemenceau and said – you, ask for something else from the Germans, ask for several more millions for the destroyed aviaries, etc. He just mocked him privately at the meeting. It was all there, and we need to have it. I would suggest that all of this is conditional pricing until the moment when we get something else. Then we will rebuild everything, but taking into account national damage and national pride. If we do not receive [the Treaty of Versailles] in a month, it will be too late, and we can appear ridiculous and make the Soviet Union look like that at the conference. You understand what a responsible task it is.

Shchusev: Maybe [we can consider] just one [example from] Reims Cathedral, how it was evaluated. We need only the principle of pricing, and it will facilitate the task immensely.

Grabar: The principle follows from the pricing itself. If we get only the principle, we will not be able to evaluate.

[…]

Brief biography

Igor Emmanuilovich Grabar (1871–1960) was an influential Soviet art historian, who began his professional career as a post-Impressionist painter before establishing himself as an art critic. In 1913 he was appointed executive director of the Tretyakov Gallery by Moscow City Duma. Grabar held this post until 1925. After 1917 he took the lead of the Museums and Preservation Section of the Soviet Government, the Museum Fund and the Moscow-based state restoration workshops. Many nationalized objects of cultural heritage were restored as a result of his actions.

Ivan Pavlovich Mashkov (1867–1945) was a Soviet architect, notable for his Neoclassical buildings and buildings in Russian Revival [Pseudo-Russian] style. He had been a member of the Moscow Archaeological Society since 1898 and was very active in preserving national historical architecture, mostly in the region of Moscow. After the Revolution 1917, Mashkov acted as Moscow City Architect. He played a significant role in the restoration of the Dormition Cathedral of the Kremlin, Novodevichy Convent and other masterpieces of Russian architecture.

Commentary – »Potential equivalents« as a strategy to compensate cultural losses

In 1945, so-called »trophy brigades« were sent to the territories occupied by the Red Army. As a result of their actions, significant collections of art objects were relocated to the USSR. Many documents concerning the actions of »trophy brigades« remained classified for a long time, and the art objects themselves hidden in secret repositories, mostly in the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow and the State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg. To date, after almost 75 years even the number of translocated objects is still unavailable to researchers.

In 1943, Soviet art historians were asked by the Soviet authorities to think about the elaboration of principles for the evaluation and compensation for the loss of Russian cultural objects during the War, something they had never considered nor wished to happen.

Assessing the losses of the Soviet Union during the war had already begun in 1942 when the Extraordinary State Commission (ChGK) was established by decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. The name of commission explains its duties: Extraordinary State Commission on the Registration and Investigation of the Crimes of the German-Fascist Occupiers and their Accomplices and the Damage Done by them to Citizens, Collective Farms, Public Organizations, State Enterprises, and Institutions of the USSR. One of the active members of ChGK was Igor Grabar. In June 1943 he proposed to establish a special Expert Bureau inside the ChGK to discuss compensation for Soviet art treasures destroyed in the war by art from Germany and its allies »to elaborate the lists of objects from the museums and private collections in Germany, Austria, Italy, Hungary, Romania, and Finland, which can be put forward as potential equivalents [editor’s note: Grabar speaks of эвентуальных эквивалентов (letter to N. Shvernik, 15.06.1943, in: Aponasenko 2014, p. 80), which used to be translated incorrectly; »эвентуальный« is used very rarely, it means »possible under appropriate conditions, circumstances, in a particular case«]. To carry out this work, there is no need to travel abroad, since the libraries of some Soviet art historians contain complete sets of catalogs of all European museums, and their personal handwritten notes contain comprehensive additional information regarding these museums.« (GARF f. Р-7021, op. 121, d. 17, l. 144).

According to Grabar, a well-chosen circle of experts would allow for more efficient work. Except for Grabar, this organization was headed by Viktor Lazarev, former deputy director at the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow and Sergei Troinitskii, the former director of the Hermitage Museum in Leningrad. Grabar’s opinion was trusted at the highest levels of government; therefore, the authorities received his proposal with great interest. The number of experts was expanded and the Bureau of Experts was established by ChGK Decree No. 12 from 8th September 1943.

Their main idea was to plan for the transfer of paintings and other cultural values as a part of »restitution in kind«. Accordingly, the main task was to evaluate the damage caused to the cultural heritage of the country as well as to compose lists of so-called »potential equivalents.« This had actually been discussed already six months earlier, as this previously unpublished archival document shows.

However, the transcript of the meeting of experts shows how difficult this approach was. Before evaluating material losses, the Soviet authorities needed to compile lists of their own lost art objects, including unique architectural monuments. During the meeting, the architect Ivan Mashkov, who had acted as Moscow City Architect after the 1917 Revolution, notes that experts »must give information indicating how much the Germans owe us« (GARF f. Р-7021, op. 121, d. 17, l. 28). Two years later, in 1945 it was clear that despite the efforts this plan had failed since the Soviet authorities were not able to put a number on the actual cultural losses. The Extraordinary State Commission completed its list only in 1946. According to this data, 564,723 museum objects were removed, damaged, or destroyed in the USSR (GARF f. P-7021, op. 116, d. 298). However, the list had no monetary estimates. In real life, this immense task appeared to be impossible.

The other problem was to develop a strategy that would, under conditions of a war-time information vacuum, provide an opportunity to compose a lists of art works from the collections of Germany and its Allies. But the most difficult issue according to the expert community was to compare the value of the destroyed art objects and to derive a specific material value for each item intended for translocation to the USSR. Grabar addresses this problem by comparing the Pergamon Altar to the Saviour Church on Nereditsa – an orthodox church built in 1198 which was located on the front line between 1941 and 1943 and then destroyed. Grabar was confident of the Soviet authorities’ success, expressing no doubt that »we will certainly take out the Pergamon altar but the challenge is what they will be credited for it.« However, Grabar, who had visited Western countries after the 1917 Revolution, was certainly aware that there was a lack of interest in and knowledge about Russian art, and therefore no specific art market for such works at that time. Grabar knew what he was talking about not only because of having had the opportunity to travel abroad. He had also participated in the secret sales of art objects, mostly from the State Hermitage Museum during the first Five-Year Plan (1928–1932). As the Russian researcher Konstantin Akinsha states, »such experts working for the Bureau as Vladimir Levinson-Lessing, Nikolai Vlasov, and Grabar himself had taken active part in the sales and were aware of the prices the Soviet government received from Western art dealers« (Akinsha, p. 201).

Trying to legitimize their approach in the eyes of Western authorities, Soviet experts discussed previous parallels in implementing relevant international practices. During the meeting the architect Alexey Shchusev, who among other projects designed the Lenin Mausoleum on Red Square, asked if it had been »taken into account, that after the First World War the French asked the Germans for Reims Cathedral, etc.« (GARF f. Р-7021, op. 121, d. 17, l. 31). Grabar claimed that the Treaty of Versailles »evaluated separate glass [panels], paintings on glass from Reims Cathedral«. Apparently, Grabar was convinced that the Versailles Treaty set out specific values for the damages and wanted to use them as a precedent. The reference to the Versailles Treaty was a preferable strategy for international dialogue.

The experts even shared a dream to found a new museum in Moscow, which was supposed to be »a museum of a kind that has not existed until now in the world« (GARF f. Р-7021, op. 121, d. 17, l. 24). However, the lists of »potential equivalents« remained no more than »wish lists composed by art historians« (Akinsha, p. 211). In the two years after 1943, the Soviet authorities dramatically changed their concept in favour of total removal of cultural assets by trophy brigades. Although documents stated that the purpose was the enrichment of state museums, the objects were in fact kept in storage.

Documents on the trophy brigades remained classified for a long time. Akinsha cites decrees and special orders signed by Josef Stalin not from originals on the grounds that they were »still classified and unavailable for researchers (as of mid-2010). We are aware of the existence of several of the most important of them only through the sensational publication of Dobycha in 1994 by the late Russian military historian Pavel Knyshevskii« (Akinsha, p. 196). It is also revealing that the title of the book »Dobycha« can be translated as plunder, loot or spoil. Akinsha notes that »The author [Knyshevskiy], a military historian, who died a year after the book appeared, had special access to the former Communist Party and military archives, but most of the documents cited are still classified in Russia« (Akinsha, p. 197).

These documents are now available for researchers and include the decrees and special orders signed by Josef Stalin who was the head of the State Committee of Defense (GKO). The dates of the documents tell a lot about the thought process and the logic of Soviet authorities. From 4th to 11th February 1945, the heads of government of the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union – Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Joseph Stalin – met at the Yalta Conference. A few days later, on 21th of February, Stalin issued the »Decree of the State Committee of Defense No 7563cc (top secret) on the establishment of permanent commissions at the operating Red Army fronts and on orders for removal of industrial equipment and materials from Germany and Poland« (RGASPI f. 644, op. 2, d. 372, l. 173–175).This decree established the creation of different trophy brigades supposed to send movable goods including engineer equipment to Russia. The final version of the document submitted to Stalin for approval had been deсlassified. In the upper right corner of the list it is annotated in Stalin’s hand »from [Lavrentiy] Beria«, and the underlined signature »Advocate (рус. За) I. Stalin« diagonally crosses the entire list (RGASPI f. 644, op. 2, d. 453, l. 179–180).

Shortly after the engineering equipment, cultural property followed. On 31st of May, 1945 GKO issued the decree 8894сс (top-secret, declassified) »On the removal of the collection of jewelry, coins, and medals, paintings, and fine porcelain from the area of Dresden.« The document ordered to »send five specialists to the Dresden area to determine the value of paintings, fine porcelain, sculptures, museum furniture, and libraries« (RGASPI f. 644, op. 1, d. 421, l. 165).

On the 26th of June, 1945 GKO issued decree 9256сс (top-secret, declassified) »On removal of art values from the trophy warehouses in Dresden.« It commanded their removal »to Moscow for the enrichment of state museums the most valuable art works of painting, sculpture and applied arts and also antiquarian and museum valuables in quantities not exceeding 2000 items from the trophy warehouses in Dresden« (RGASPI f. 644, op. 1, d. 430, l. 177). The decree 9725сс (top-secret, declassified) from the 3rd of August, 1945 »On the export of special equipment and material values from warehouses in Berlin« contained a list of seven items, where not only machine tools (56 pieces), typographical paper (200 tons) and laboratory tools (200 boxes) but also »Architectural and art museum values (collections of ceramics, majolica, porcelain, etc.)« amounting to 220 crates were listed (RGASPI f. 644, op. 1, d. 449, l. 113–114).

In light of these developments, the work that had been done over many years by the Bureau of Experts looks like a futile attempt. In 1945, the Bureau of Experts provided the final list of equivalents to Andrei Konstantinov, the deputy head of the Committee on Arts of the Council of People’s Commissars. They included 1,745 pieces of art from the museums of Germany, Austria, Hungary, Italy in the amount of 70,587,200 US dollars: »Painting 813 items to the amount of 49,155,200 US dollars, drawings 382 items to the amount of 1,147,000 dollars, sculptures 107 items to the amount of 2,766,000 dollars, ancient art 217 items to the amount of 13,026,400 dollars, Ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia 210 items to amount 3,835,500, Byzantine art 16 items worth 647,000 dollars« (GARF f. Р-7021, op. 116, d. 291, l. 293–296). The Sistine Madonna was evaluated at $2,000,000, the Pergamon Altar at $7,500,000.

But in 1946 there was almost no practical need for these documents. The lists of equivalents for prints, paintings, sculptures, antiquities, and so on were transferred to the Inter-Allied Reparation Commission in Berlin (Aponasenko, p. 29). But there were no corresponding lists of objects which had in fact been translocated to the USSR. The declassified documents show that in the orders received by the trophy brigades, art objects were counted by hundreds of crates or thousands of unspecified items. The bulk removal of cultural assets as »military trophies« led to a situation where the Soviet authorities consistently refused to provide lists of cultural items already removed from Germany.

At the same time, in January 1946, a quadripartite Special Working Group within the ACC Reparations, Deliveries and Restitution Directorate was finalizing the draft text of the »Special Instructions Concerning Replacement by Similar or Comparable Property of Objects of a Unique Character.« The transcript of the meetings demonstrates the new attitude of the Soviet government that replaced the »potential equivalents« approach:

R. (USSR) »How shall we understand the requirement for presenting lists ›The property that was taken away from the Zone of Occupation since May 1945, and the present location of this?‹«

A. (USA) »That refers to German-owned works of art that were in this country at the end of the war and that have been removed since the seventh of May.«

R. »It is not necessary to present such lists. Objects belonging to the Germans that were exported after the seventh of May are Soviet property, as military trophies, and there is no case of replacement. The Germans hid property such as valuable works of art to save them from military action. Such property and property taken by troops, especially the Red Army, is without doubt military trophies and cannot be used for replacement; it is useless to make a list for such property« (cited after Akinsha, p. 208).

Anna Pushakova is a lecturer at Moscow City University, specializing on the history of museum collections in the USSR. From 2013 to 2018 she was working as a keeper of Japanese and Chinese collection in the The State Museum of Oriental Art (Moscow), where she curated several exhibitions.

Literature

Anna Aponasenko, State Hermitage: »Displaced Art. 1945–1958. Archive documents. Pt. 1« (Ser. Pages History of Hermitage), Saint-Petersburg, 2014.

Konstantin Akinsha. »Stalin’s Decrees and Soviet Trophy Brigades: Compensation, Restitution in Kind, or ›Trophies‹ of War?«, in: International Journal of Cultural Property, 17 (2), 195–216. Cambridge, 2010.

Cite this article as:
Grabar et al.: A meeting of expert architects on the question of methods for evaluating architectural monuments (1943), commented by Anna Pushakova, in: Translocations. Anthologie: Eine Sammlung kommentierter Quellentexte zu Kulturgutverlagerungen seit der Antike, https://translanth.hypotheses.org/ueber/grabar, published 19.08.2019.

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