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Madrid: The Galerie Nefer link

Those who have been following the return of antiquities to Italy will know that a pattern is emerging. Galerie Nefer in Zurich was one of the galleries that handled material that has been returned from the J. Paul Getty Museum (see D.W.J. Gill and C. Chippindale. 2007. "From Malibu to Rome: further developments on the return of antiquities." International Journal of Cultural Property 14: 205-40 [abstract and link]).

The objects include:

  • a. An Attic red-figured cup, signed by Euphronios and attributed to Onesimos. Cup restored from various sources including Galerie Nefer during the 1980s; cup returned in 1999; further fragments supplied by Giacomo Medici. [discussion].
  • b. An Attic red-figured phiale, Douris. Cup restored from fragments acquired over several years; first fragment given by Werner Nussberger (1981); further fragments sold by Galerie Nefer; additional fragments on loan [discussion].
  • c. Fragmentary Corinthian olpe, gift of Werner Nussberger (1981).


The cup now in Madrid, attributed to the Euergides painter (no. 85; inv. 1999/99/84; Beazley Archive no. 41408), shows a youth climbing into a pithos. It appeared in Galerie Nefer's catalogue in 1992 (Ancient Art, 10, no. 16) and was subsequently sold by Christie's New York 30 May 1997, lot 108. The cup's collecting history prior to 1992 is undeclared.

Várez Fisa would not be the only private collector to acquire objects that passed through Galerie Nefer; see also the Stanford Place collection.

Galerie Nefer was at one time a member of the International Association of Dealers in Ancient Art (IADAA). It has also been linked to the 'Gospel of Judas' (Codex Tchacos).


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