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Making The St. Louis Connection Essay

3095 words - 13 pages

Adolf Hitler spent much of his life wanting to be a painter and when he was eighteen years old he fled with two other young men to Vienna. He and the two other men wanted to attend the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. The two other men were accepted but Adolf Hitler was not. He blamed his non-acceptance on the fact that the art academy had been run by the Jewish and were discriminating against him. After years of failing in the art industry, Hitler’s political ambitions rose to the surface and he brought the Nazi Party to power in Germany. The Rape of Europa investigates Hitler and other leading advisors, and how they looted numerous of the great museums and private art collections of Europe during the duration of World War II in order to increase the collections of Germany's leaders. In the basement of Archives Center for Military History in Washington D.C. stores a large amount of Nazi paintings too controversial for exhibition and many of them are water paintings that Hitler painted over the years. Over the next twenty years art continued to interest Hitler; Hitler did not believe that the Jewish people could see art. All of the German leaders had an art collection and the purging of art was an enormous cause of the Holocaust.
The looting of art in Europe began when Nazi Germans were ordering German museums ran by Jewish to cleanse theirs collections of more than sixteen thousand works of art masters. Thousands of artwork was burned and purged. The Mona Lisa, David, and Raphael’s Portrait of a Young Man are just a few examples of art that were purged during the war. The Camposanto, Warsaw Royal Castle, and the Louvre are just a few examples of historic museums that were burned and destroyed during the looting of the German Nazis. Today even after sixty years art is still being discovered, repaired, and fought for in court battles. For example, Picasso’s painting of 1937 is just resurfacing in an auction in New York City. Museums nowadays will discover or be brought paintings that have a historic value and they do not always realize that they do not have rightful ownership of the painting. When the museums are brought the paintings Jewish people will try to fight for the painting because it was part of the heritage. Some museums cooperate and others do not and the battle between who the painting belongs to becomes an enormous court battle.
The central theme of The Rape of Europa describes the lengths and expenses that a community should go to preserve their art. I believe that communities should go extreme lengths and expenses to preserve their art because art is part of our cultural and if past generations did not preserve their art then future generations would not be able to learn about their cultural, background and heritage. Also, in earlier times art was a way of communication. For instance, cave men and women would draw cave drawings and if scientist did not preserve these drawings then we would not know what life was like back then. ...

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