Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD, to Discuss Nazi Art Plunder During WWII, Nov. 10

Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD, to Discuss Nazi Art Plunder During WWII, Nov. 10

Photo of Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD

Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD

This Open VISIONS Forum Espresso lecture is presented by the Fairfield University Art Museum in collaboration with the Bennett Center for Judaic Studies, the departments of History and Modern Languages & Literatures (MLL), and programs in Art History, Visual & Performing Arts, Judaic Studies, and German language.

Woven into Adolf Hitler’s maniacal dreams of glory was his determination to create his own art museum filled with the most notable paintings, sculptures, and tapestries from the people he had conquered. His right-hand man in this endeavor was SS officer Hermann Göring, a party leader and a creator of the Gestapo. The result of their years-long efforts led to what is now widely considered the largest art theft in history.

On Tuesday, Nov. 10 at 7:30 p.m. Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD, will tell the story of Dr. Bruno Lohse, an art agent for Göring in Paris during World War II. Dr. Lohse helped his supervisor acquire hundreds of paintings, playing a lead role in the Nazi looting organization, the ERR, which raided art from Jewish apartments. His lecture, Hermann Göring’s Man in Paris: The Story of a Nazi Art Plunderer and His World,” is free and open to the public and will be delivered in a virtual format.

Over a nine-year period from 1998 to 2007, Dr. Petropoulos, the John V. Croul Professor of European History at Claremont-McKenna College, interviewed Göring’s art agent, Bruno Lohse, dozens of times to develop an understanding of Lohse and his world, especially in the gritty postwar period when networks of former Nazi art dealers persisted. After Lohse died, Dr. Petropoulos obtained many of his papers and photographs, enabling him to write the most nuanced study of a Nazi art plunderer to date (forthcoming from Yale University Press). Dr. Petropoulos was even able to track a looted painting by Camille Pissarro to Lohse’s Zurich bank vault, eventually resulting in the work’s restitution. A documentary based on his book is currently in production and clips from the film will be part of this presentation. 

Dr. Petropoulos, who earned his PhD at Harvard in 1990, is an internationally recognized expert on Nazi art looting. From 1998 until 2000 he served as research director of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Holocaust Assets. Featured in the 2006 documentary, The Rape of Europa, Petropoulos is the “go to” expert for international tribunals seeking restitution of stolen artworks under the twisted legal dealings of the Third Reich.

“Hermann Göring’s Man in Paris: The Story of a Nazi Art Plunderer and His World” with Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD is a Quick Center Open VISIONS Forum Espresso event. For more information about this free virtual lecture, visit


Jonathan Petropoulos, PhD: “Hermann Göring’s Man in Paris: The Story of a Nazi Art Plunderer and His World”

Date: Tuesday, November 10
Time: 7:30 p.m.

Additional Details:

For more information about this virtual lecture, visit and

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Last modified: 10-29-20 9:36 PM


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