Margaret Sankey's Reviews > The Lady in Gold: The Extraordinary Tale of Gustav Klimt's Masterpiece, Bloch-Bauer

The Lady in Gold by Anne-Marie  O'Connor
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's review
Jun 03, 2012

really liked it
Read in June, 2012

O'Connor came into the story late--at the point when the heirs of the Bloch-Bauer family were successfully suing Austria for the return of their Klimt paintings, and convinced all of the player to open family archives to reconstruct the whole story. This book recreates the art world of turn of the century Vienna, with newly rich Jewish families embracing patronage and collecting and trailblazers like Klimt dependent on private commissions like that of Adele Bloch-Bauer. O'Connor follows the systematic and ruthless persecution and extortion of the extended family after 1938 and the diaspora to Canada, Los Angeles and Israel. It was only in the 1970s that a younger generation wanted to fight for the expropriated art and openly criticize the Austrian government, with the final denouement coming in 2006.

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