The war in Ukraine complicates the return of the Morozov collection to Russia

Visitors in the exhibition dedicated to the Morozov collection, at the Louis Vuitton Foundation, in Paris.

The temporary exhibition ends this Sunday, April 3.

AFP - GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT

Text by: RFI Follow

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The exhibition dedicated to the Morozov collection and its masterpieces exhibited at the Vuitton Foundation in Paris since September 21 closes its doors this Sunday April 3.

This unique set, Russian pride, will have to be sent back to Russia.

Which might be complicated.

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From the beginning of the Russian invasion in Ukraine, voices were raised.

Wouldn't it be possible to keep the 200 paintings by masters from

the Morozov collection

, exhibited at the Vuitton foundation, since the fall?

The answer is no.

In 1994, France adopted a law which made works loaned by a foreign power or institution during their stay in France unseizable. 

Legally, the collection, which is traveling outside of Russia for the first time, is untouchable.

The canvases of the French masters Van Gogh, Gauguin, Renoir, Cézanne, Matisse, Monet or that of the Russians Golovin, Gontcharova, Melnikov, Repin or Serov should therefore find the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts , the Tretyakov Gallery or the Russian National Museum. 

The question is rather when.

If the conditions for them to travel safely are not sufficient, we will wait

 ," said Jean-Paul Claverie, adviser to LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault.

Their repatriation, near or far, by road or by air, will be like any transport of works of art: top secret.

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