Christoph Bernoulli

Summary

Carl Christoph Friedrich Bernoulli (born 2 October 1897 in Basel; died 9 August 1981 in Rheinfelden) was a Swiss art dealer and interior designer from the Bernoulli family of scholars.

Early lifeEdit

Christoph Bernoulli was born in 1897, into the well-known Bernoulli family. Son of the librarian Carl Christoph Bernoulli and Anna Bertha, née Burger,[1] he spent his childhood in Basel with two older sisters. In 1917 he began to study law in Basel and Zurich but soon switched to philosophy, music history and German literary history, completing his doctorate in 1921 on The Music of Romanticism.

In 1921 he and his father founded the music publishing house "Edition Bernoulli" in Berlin, in 1922 he was a trainee at Frankfurter Zeitung. On 4 March 1926 he married Alice.[2] The couple had two sons: Carl Christoph (1929–2011) and Peter Daniel (1936–2007). Bernoulli worked mainly as an art dealer and interior designer.

Among his acquaintances among the cultural workers in Berlin in the 1920s were the actress Eleonora von Mendelssohn and her brother, the musician Francesco von Mendelssohn. The Bernoulli couple remained friends with the von Mendelssohn siblings until their death and they visited each other frequently.[3]

ArtEdit

In 1938/1939 Bernoulli was commissioned to furnish the wine bar in the model hotel at the Swiss National Exhibition in Zurich. He collected Appenzell peasant painters and in 1941, together with Lucas Lichtenhan, organized the Swiss Folk Art exhibition at the Kunsthalle Basel.

Bernoulli helped organize exhibitions of tapestries from the High Middle Ages and of old silver at the Kunstmuseum Basel.[4]

Investigations into Nazi-era activities (1933-1945)Edit

Switzerland was a major center for trading in Nazi-looted art[5] and numerous investigations named Christoph Bernoulli as one of the art dealers involved in this trade.[6][7][8]

In 1946 the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) Art Looting Intelligence Unit compiled a list of people who were allegedly involved in "looted art" trafficking in which Bernoulli appears in connection with Nazi looter Hans Wendland ("Reported also by French Police to have transacted business in Paris on Wendland's behalf.)" and the E.R.R. looting organization.[9][10] ("Six ERR-confiscated pictures passed through his hands.")

The Swiss Bergier report commissioned by the Swiss government in 1996 to investigate Switzerland's activities during World War II, emphasized Bernoulli's role in bringing degenerate art from Germany [to] come to American museums, notably the Museum of Modern Art in New York." [11][12]

Bernoulli had a close, long-term relationship with both Curt Valentin and Alex Vömel, the Nazi art dealer who in 1933 Aryanized the gallery of his former employer Alfred Flechtheim.[13] Vömel sold part of Flechtheim's collection through Bernoulli.[14]

The Basel Historical Museum describes Bernoulli as an "educated and sociable art connoisseur "and says that "During the time of National Socialism he supported numerous emigrants".[15]

Postwar careerEdit

Bernoulli continued his art dealing,[16] curatorial and cultural activities after the war. In 1946 Bernoulli set up the Swiss embassy in Paris, which was used as a warehouse during the war, for his friend, the historian, diplomat and writer Carl Jacob Burckhardt. In 1947 he worked on the decor of the newly created Ciba Foundation in London.[17]

In 1950/1951, Benoulli was appointed honorary delegate for exhibition questions at the Kunsthalle Basel, where he co-organized the following exhibitions: Blauer Reiter, 1950; L'Apocalypse - Tapestries from Angers Cathedral, 1951; Old silver from a private collection in Basel, 1951; Treasures of Ancient Egyptian Art, 1953; Masterpieces of Greek Art, 1960; 125 years of landscape painting in Basel, 1964.[4] After the complete renovation, in 1955 he took over the furnishing of the Wildt'schen House on Petersplatz in Basel. During 1963/1964 he undertook to create a museum for the Baur Collection in Geneva. In 1966 he and a team organized a new Jewish museum in Basel's old town and helped set up the Antikenmuseum Basel. In 1976/77 he set up a museum in the converted Murten town mill.

In 1962, he published Schweizerische Volkskünstler[18] and in 1964 he published "Ansprache anlässlich der Eröffnung der zweiten Jubiläumsausstellung "125 Jahre Basler Landschaft" am 5. Sept. 1964 in der Kunsthalle".[19]

Bernoulli died on 9 August 1981 in Rheinfelden (AG).

Restitution claimsEdit

Several claims for restitution by the families of Jewish collectors persecuted by the Nazis involve artworks that passed through Bernoulli. One of the most famous is Léone Meyer's claim against the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art at the University of Oklahoma for the Pissarro Shepherdess Bringing in the Sheep.[20][21] The painting was looted by the Nazis in Paris in 1941 and has been the object of ferocious legal battles for decades.[22][23][24] Bernoulli acquired the looted painting, before selling it in New York.[25] After the war, Raoul Meyer tried to recover his looted paintings, and in 1953, he sued Bernoulli for its return as Nazi loot but a Swiss judge dismissed the suit, saying a five-year window for such lawsuits had passed.[26] Decades later, his granddaughter located the painting in the Fred Jones jr. Museum of Art and sued for restitution.[27]

WorkEdit

MonographsEdit

  • Die Psychologie von Carl Gustav Carus und deren geistesgeschichtliche Bedeutung. Diss., Diederich, Jena 1925.
  • Vom Sinn des Kunsthandwerks. Offizin Hartung, Hamburg 1961.
  • Alberto Giacometti, 1901–1966, Erinnerungen und Aufzeichnungen. Huber, Bern 1974.
  • Christoph Bernoulli: Ausgewählte Vorträge und Schriften. Mit Briefen und Beiträgen von Freunden. Hrsg. von Peter Nathan. Berichthaus, Zürich 1967.

Texts (selection)Edit

  • Rudolf Hanhart; Vorwort von Christoph Bernoulli: Appenzeller Bauernmalerei. Niggli, Teufen 1959/1970.
  • René Wehrli; Textbeiträge von Christoph Bernoulli und Ernst Morgenthaler: Hans Fischer genannt Fis. Artemis Verlag, Zürich 1959.
  • Christoph Bernoulli: Kleine Festrede zum 80jährigen Bestehen des Museums für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte Dortmund. Schloss Cappenberg, 10. April 1963. Kulturamt, Dortmund 1963.
  • Manuel Gasser, Willy Rotzler: Kunstschätze in der Schweiz. Einl. von Christoph Bernoulli. Manesse Verlag, Zürich 1964.
  • Christoph Bernoulli: Gedenkrede in Georg Schmidt 1896-1965. Basel 1965.
  • René Creux; unter Mitarbeit von Christoph Bernoulli: Volkskunst in der Schweiz. Editions de Fontainemore, Paudex 1970.
  • Charles Apothéloz; Vorwort von Christoph Bernoulli: Meisterwerke des Scherenschnitts. J. J. Hauswirth, L. Saugy. Huber, Frauenfeld 1978.

LiteratureEdit

  • René Bernoulli-Sutter; unter Mitarbeit von Lion Bernoulli: Die Familie Bernoulli, Helbing & Lichtenhahn, Basel 1972.
  • Christoph Bernoulli – Spass mit Briefmarken, Enveloppements, Christoph Bernoullis Briefmarken-Spiele. Basler Zeitung, Basel 1979.
  • Blubacher, Thomas (2012). Gibt es etwas Schöneres als Sehnsucht? die Geschwister Eleonora und Francesco von Mendelssohn (1. Aufl ed.). Berlin. ISBN 978-3-458-35813-8. OCLC 794503889.
  • Blubacher, Thomas (2010). "Die Holbeinstrasse, das ist das Europa, das ich liebe" achtzehn biographische Miniaturen aus dem Basel des 20. Jahrhunderts. Basel. ISBN 978-3-7965-2703-6. OCLC 696036197.
  • Fluchtgut--Raubgut : der Transfer von Kulturgütern in und über die Schweiz 1933-1945 und die Frage der Restitution. Esther Tisa Francini, Anja Heuss, Georg Kreis. Zürich: Chronos. 2001. ISBN 3-0340-0601-2. OCLC 50387692.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)

External linksEdit

  • Bernoulli, Website über den Kunsthändler Alfred Flechtheim
  • Historisches Museum Basel: Porträt des Christoph Bernoulli gemalt von Irène Zurkinden
  • Nachlass Christoph Bernoulli in der Universitätsbibliothek Basel
  • Informationen zu einer Ausstellung der Universitätsbibliothek Basel über Christoph Bernoulli (21. Juni bis 13. Sept. 2003)
  • Raubkunst, Kunstraub: Die Schweiz und der Handel mit gestohlenen Kulturgütern zur Zeit des Zweiten Weltkriegs
  • La Bergère – Meyer Heirs and Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Dr. phil. I. Carl Christoph Rudolf BERNOULLI, 1861 - 1923". www.myheritage.fr. Archived from the original on 2021-05-03. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
  2. ^ Dodis, Diplomatische Dokumente der Schweiz | Documents diplomatiques suisses | Documenti diplomatici svizzeri | Diplomatic Documents of Switzerland |. "Bernoulli, Alice". dodis.ch. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
  3. ^ Blubacher, Thomas (2012). Gibt es etwas Schöneres als Sehnsucht? : die Geschwister Eleonora und Francesco von Mendelssohn. Insel-Verl. ISBN 978-3-458-35813-8. OCLC 875045642.
  4. ^ a b "History • Kunsthalle Basel". Kunsthalle Basel. April 17, 2014. Archived from the original on 2021-05-02. Retrieved 2021-05-02. Robert T. Stoll (1919–2006) studied German, art history, and archaeology in Basel and was a junior lecturer at Cambridge before taking over as director at the age of thirty. Dr. Christoph Bernoulli was assigned by the Kunstverein committee to support him as a kind of mentor. Bernoulli was behind the exhibitions of tapestries from the High Middle Ages and of old silver held during Stoll's term in office.
  5. ^ Polack, Emmanuelle (2019). Le marché de l'art sous l'Occupation : 1940-1944. ISBN 979-10-210-2089-4. OCLC 1089004607. Annex 7: La Suisse, plaque tournante des oeuvres d'art. Les chiffres officiels de l'importation des oeuvres d'art en Suisse entre 1941 et 1944 témoignent d'une augmentation importante des objects en provenance du Reich. Ces données alimentent la thèse selon laquelle la Suisse aurait abrité une filière d'écoulement d'oeuves aux origines incertaines.
  6. ^ Petropoulos, Jonathan (2016-07-27). "Art Dealer Networks in the Third Reich and in the Postwar Period". Journal of Contemporary History. 52 (3): 546–565. doi:10.1177/0022009416637417. ISSN 0022-0094. S2CID 159830753. Other key dealers who traded in looted objects include Christoph Bernoulli.
  7. ^ Buomberger, Thomas (1998). Raubkunst, Kunstraub : die Schweiz und der Handel mit gestohlenen Kulturgütern zur Zeit des Zweiten Weltkriegs. Switzerland. Bundesamt für Kultur, Nationale Informationsstelle für Kulturgüter-Erhaltung. Zürich: Orell Füssli. pp. 67, 81, 84, 96, 123, 161, 256, 314. ISBN 3-280-02807-8. OCLC 40985424.
  8. ^ O'Donnell, Nicholas M. (2017). A tragic fate : law and ethics in the battle over Nazi-looted art. Chicago, Illinois. ISBN 978-1-63425-733-6. OCLC 961009560. Bernoulli was listed on a 1946 "Index of enemy and collaborationist personnel involved in art looted recommended for exclusion from the United States"
  9. ^ "Art Looting Intelligence Unit (ALIU) Reports 1945-1946 and ALIU Red Flag Names List and Index". www.lootedart.com. Archived from the original on 2009-07-15. Retrieved 2021-03-22. Bernoulli, Christophe. Basle. Well known younger art dealer, of good family with strong connections. Six ERR-confiscated pictures passed through his hands. See Allied List. Close friend of Burchardt, the Swiss Ambassador to France for whom he made several trips to Paris in 1945, to arrange for redecoration of the Swiss Embassy. Reported also by French Police to have transacted business in Paris on Wendland's behalf.
  10. ^ "Lost Art Internet Database - Beteiligte Privatpersonen und Körperschaften am NS-Kulturgutraub - Bernoulli, Dr. Christoph". www.lostart.de. Retrieved 2021-03-22.
  11. ^ Cohan, William D. (2011-11-17). "MoMA's Problematic Provenances". ARTnews.com. Archived from the original on 2019-12-08. Retrieved 2021-03-22. "The highest concentration of works of degenerate art from Germany [to] come to an American museum through Valentin's influence and connections with Buchholz in Germany and Bernoulli"—art dealer Christophe Bernoulli, a longtime Valentin friend—"in Switzerland, can be found today at the Museum of Modern Art in New York," Stein concluded.
  12. ^ Fluchtgut--Raubgut : der Transfer von Kulturgütern in und über die Schweiz 1933-1945 und die Frage der Restitution. Esther Tisa Francini, Anja Heuss, Georg Kreis. Zürich: Chronos. 2001. ISBN 3-0340-0601-2. OCLC 50387692.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  13. ^ Tisa Francini, Esther (2001). Fluchtgut - Raubgut : der Transfer von Kulturgütern in und über die Schweiz 1933-1945 und die Frage der Restitution. ISBN 978-3-0340-0601-9. OCLC 965432798.
  14. ^ "United State [sic] District Court Southern District of New York Michael R. Hulton and Penny R. Hulton, Plaintiffs, - against - Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, a/k/a The Bavarian State Paintings Collections, and Freistaat Bayern, a/k/a the Free State of Bavaria, a political subdivision of a foreign state" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-05-02. 88. By that time Vömel had already begun selling Flechtheim's collection, at least in part, through Christoph Bernoulli—a Swiss art dealer, now notorious as a profiteer from art and property left behind in desperation by Jews in Germany and eventually other occupied countries—converting for his own profit what clearly belonged to the owner of the gallery, not his traitorous assistant.
  15. ^ "Details - HMB Porträt des Christoph Bernoulli gemalt von Irène Zurkinden". www.hmb.ch. Archived from the original on 2020-01-01. Retrieved 2021-05-03. Der universal gebildete und gesellige Kunstkenner Dr. Christoph Bernoulli (1897-1981) hatte bedeutenden Einfluss auf das Basler Kulturleben. So hat er unter anderem das Wildtsche Haus und das Jüdische Museum in Basel eingerichtet und leitete 1950-51 interimistisch die Kunsthalle. In der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus unterstützte er zahlreiche Emigranten.
  16. ^ "François Gauzi · Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec · Stiftung Sammlung E.G. Bührle". www.buehrle.ch. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
  17. ^ "A PAIR OF BRASS AND PATINATED METAL CORINTHIAN COLUMN TABLE LAMPS". www.christies.com. Archived from the original on 2021-05-03. Retrieved 2021-05-03. This building was chosen by the Ciba (later Novartis) Foundation in 1947 as the location for a new charitable foundation devoted to promoting international cooperation in medical and chemical research. At its inception, the foundation commissioned Dr Christoph Bernoulli from Switzerland to furnish the building with Adam and Regency pieces in keeping with the age of the house, creating a rich collection and a stimulating environment for the many scientists - including 83 Nobel Laureates who visited the building over the following 60 years.
  18. ^ Bernoulli, Christoph (1962). Schweizerische Volkskünstler. [Zürich]: [Verlag nicht ermittelbar]. Archived from the original on 2021-05-03. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
  19. ^ Bernoulli, Christoph (1964). Ansprache anlässlich der Eröffnung der zweiten Jubiläumsausstellung "125 Jahre Basler Landschaft" am 5. Sept. 1964 in der Kunsthalle. [Erscheinungsort nicht ermittelbar]: [Verlag nicht ermittelbar].
  20. ^ "French Woman Sues University of Oklahoma to Recover Nazi-Looted Art". www.lootedart.com. Archived from the original on 2016-08-17. Retrieved 2021-03-22.
  21. ^ "World Jewish Congress". World Jewish Congress. Retrieved 2021-03-22. In another case, the Meyer family of France lost its art collection in 1941 in a similar theft. In 1952, their painting "shepherdess bringing in sheep" by Camille Pissarro, was found in the possession of a prominent Basel art dealer, Christoph Bernoulli. When the Meyer family attempted to negotiate its restitution, Mr. Bernoulli, offered to sell it back to them, but at full market price. Does that sound right to you? When the Meyer family brought legal action against the dealer, the Basel court held that the Meyer family could not get it back. Why? The court said the Meyers could not prove Mr. Bernoulli purchased the painting in bad faith. Case closed. The painting resurfaced again 60 years later, in 2012, in, of all places, the Fred Jones Museum at the University of Oklahoma, where it was donated as a gift.
  22. ^ Frydman, Arthur (2020-12-15). "" La Bergère rentrant des moutons " de Pissarro restera-t-il en France ?". Le Point (in French). Retrieved 2021-05-26.
  23. ^ Perrier, Fabien (2020-12-15). "Cette bataille judiciaire derrière La Bergère rentrant des moutons de Pissarro". www.marianne.net (in French). Retrieved 2021-05-26.
  24. ^ "French woman faces court threat in 'quest' to win back Nazi-looted Pissarro". the Guardian. 2021-02-08. Retrieved 2021-05-26.
  25. ^ "Dérobé par les nazis, un Pissarro est restitué à sa propriétaire française". Connaissance des Arts (in French). 2016-02-29. Retrieved 2021-05-26.
  26. ^ "French Woman Sues University of Oklahoma to Recover Nazi-Looted Art". www.lootedart.com. Archived from the original on 2016-08-17. Retrieved 2021-05-26.
  27. ^ "French woman sues OU in hopes of recovering painting stolen by Nazis". www.lootedart.com. Archived from the original on 2016-08-17. Retrieved 2021-05-26.


[[Category:1981 deaths]] [[Category:1897 births]] [[Category:Swiss people]] [[Category:Interior designers]] [[Category:Art dealers]]