Russia sees ‘problems’ in the return of a famous art collection from Paris


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Paris (AFP)- Russia’s ambassador to France warned on Tuesday that disrupted air travel could make it more difficult to return dozens of prized artworks currently on display at a popular exhibition in Paris, as Moscow wars against Ukraine rages.

Calls for the seizure of Russian assets abroad have grown as Moscow continues its bombardment, including those belonging to those close to President Vladimir Putin.

The masterpieces of modern art presented at the Louis Vuitton Foundation come from the Morozov Collection, amassed at the dawn of the 20th century by two brothers from a textile and trading dynasty.

But widespread cancellations of flights between France and Russia and disputed road traffic as fighting in Ukraine continues mean their return could prove difficult.

“It is no secret that in the current situation, with all the drastic measures that have been taken, for example the suspension of flights between Russia and France, problems have arisen,” the Russian envoy said. Alexei Meshkov to reporters.

“We are currently working on logistical issues to ensure the safest possible return of this collection to Russia,” he said.

The Louis Vuitton Foundation, created by the billionaire founder of the fashion conglomerate LVMH, has already specified that “as with all major loans of works of art, the collection is covered by an elusive clause”.

She organized the Morozov exhibition in partnership with the State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg and the State Pushkin Museum and the State Tretyakov Gallery, both in Moscow.

More than one million visitors had seen the exhibition by the end of February, nearing the record 1.29 million people who had visited another Louis Vuitton exhibition of works from a major Russian collection, Sergei Shchukin, in 2016- 2017.

The exhibition includes works by major Russian artists as well as paintings by French masters such as Monet, Cézanne and Gauguin.


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