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Bern Art Museum accepts Gurlitt collection


Bern Art Museum has accepted the bequest made by Cornelius Gurlitt. The museum's board of trustees has signed a corresponding agreement with the Federal Republic of Germany and the Federal State of Bavaria.

(link to agreement:

Together with Bern lawyer Dr Marcel Bruelhart, CMS advised Bern Art Museum on all aspects of the complex issues surrounding the agreement, ahead of the museum's acceptance of the art collection bequeathed by Cornelius Gurlitt. The team had a six-month timeframe in which to explore the risks associated with accepting the bequest and to remove any obstacles.
The art collection acquired by Cornelius Gurlitt, comprising more than 1,500 works, had been seized in connection with an investigation into alleged tax evasion. Mr Gurlitt died in May 2014. It turned out that the collection also included pieces looted by the Nazis. When this was made public last year, it triggered a worldwide debate. Cornelius Gurlitt had named Bern Art Museum as his sole heir.

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