Portrait of Sophie Cassirer by Lovis Corinth, 1906.

Notes on Provenance from the Philadelphia Museum of Art Collection.

Lovis Corinth, German, 1858 - 1925
Oil on canvas
37 11/16 x 29 5/8 inches (95.7 x 75.2 cm)
Purchased with the George W. Elkins Fund, 1975

Bruno Cassirer (1872-1941), Berlin, Germany, and Oxford, England, to c. 1938; confiscated by the National
Socialist authorities, c. 1938; auction sale, Oellerich, Berlin, March [16?] 1944; purchased by Paul Ortwin
Rave (director) for the Nationalgalerie, Berlin, March 16, 1944 (inv. no. A II 1004); recovered by the Allied
authorities at the end of WWII and sent to the Central Collecting Point at Wiesbaden, United States zone;
returned in 1959 to the Staatlichen Museen zu Berlin, subsequently sent to the museum at Berlin-Dahlem;
PMA-List of Works That Changed Ownership in Continental Europe, 1933-1945 restituted to the Cassirer heirs, Sophie Cassirer Walzer, (daughter of Bruno Cassirer) (1902-1979), Oxford, England, and George Hill (son-in-law of Bruno Cassirer), Oxford, England, early 1960's [1]; sale, Sotheby's, London, April 21, 1971, lot 72, illus. (as "Sofie mit Puppe") [2]; purchased by Gordon F. Hampton (1912-1996), San Marino, California [3]; with Allan Frumkin Gallery, New York, by 1975; sold to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, February 3, 1975 [4].

1. The preceding provenance information provided in a letter of February 10, 2003, from Dr. Jörn
Grabowski, director of the Zentralarchiv of the Staatlichen Museen zu Berlin, based on his research in the
museum archives. To escape Nazi persecution in Germany, Bruno Cassirer had fled in 1938 to Oxford,
England, where he died in 1941. Many other artworks from his collection were also left behind in Germany
after his forced emigration and acquired by the Berlin Nationalgalerie in 1944 (see Tageszeitung, Berlin,
August 23, 2002). In a letter dated May 30, 1980 (curatorial file) Michael Kauffmann, whose wife was
Sophie Cassirer's niece, recollected that Sophie and her husband Richard Walzer emigrated first to Rome in
1934, then to Oxford in 1938, where her husband was a professor. The other Cassirer heir, Günther Hell,
who changed his name to George Hill after his emigration to England in 1938, was Bruno Cassirer’s son-in-
law, having married his daughter Agnes, and became the head of the Bruno Cassirer publishing firm in
Oxford after Cassirer's death. Agnes Cassirer died in the 1950's (see Harry Nutt, Bruno Cassirer, Berlin,
1989, pp. 78-79, 119). Dr. Grabowski's research has shown that as the result of a restitution claim the
painting was returned to the Cassirer heirs in the early 1960's. The exact date of return remains
undetermined; it was probably before December 1962, when the Treuhandverwaltung für Kulturgut (Trustee
Administration for Cultural Property) of the Federal Republic completed its restitution activities.

2. Presumably consigned by the Cassirer family, although the name of the consignor cannot be confirmed by
Sotheby's. Supporting this are notes made by Thomas Corinth (curatorial file), the artist's son and a friend of
Sophie Cassirer Walzer, stating that toward the end of her life she put the painting up for sale in London,
from which it was purchased by a collector in California.

3. See curatorial file and Sotheby's catalog price list. Thomas Corinth, Lovinth Corinth: eine Dokumentation
(1979), p. 323, notes that Hampton lived in San Marino, California. He is presumably to be identified as the
prominent Los Angeles attorney and art patron whose large collection of 20th-century art was donated to the
California State University, Long Beach, after his death.

4. Copy of receipt from Frumkin Gallery in curatorial file. Thomas Corinth (see above, note 3) notes that
Hampton sold to the painting to a New York dealer (presumably Frumkin).


Art Critic, London

Lovis Corinth
20 February - 4 May 1997

Battle with the bottle: Lovis Corinth's alcoholism almost stopped him becoming a great artist, says Richard Dorment

The pity of it all is that when Corinth gets it right, he doesn't just paint a good picture, he paints a masterpiece. As you walk through the exhibition you keep catching glimpses of an artist who could have been a 20th-century Delacroix. There is not a single line in his ravishing Still Life with Dead Hare and Partridges, or in a late, lush, study of tulips and lilacs, but every form in each picture is fully realised. My favourite work in the show is one of the quietest, his portrait of six-year-old Sophie Cassirer, wide-eyed with fright, but eager to please the big bear of an artist who is staring so intently at her. Look how Corinth contrasts her carefully painted face with the flurry of violent pink brushstrokes which turn out to be a doll carelessly flung over the arm of the chair.