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White House Art Intrigue: The Tangled Tale of Eight Paintings by Post-Impressionist Master Cézanne

Posted in Art Recovery/Theft

An extraordinary bequest of eight French masterpieces created by Paul Cézanne from American collector Charles A. Loeser 85 years ago “to the President of the United States of America and his successors in office for the adornment of the White House” had become diverted more than 60 years ago.  Such bequest certainly would have been the envy of any art museum throughout the world.  As explained in this recent article, the tale of the eight Cézanne paintings is indeed an intriguing one still tangled with some puzzle pieces missing. 

Presently, three of the Cézanne paintings are displayed in the National Gallery of Art while the remaining five are installed in the family quarters of the White House.  The White House curator’s office has confirmed that the eight Cézanne artworks have never been displayed together as an ensemble, as directed by the Loeser bequest.