"Portrait of Wally", Egon Schieles tender picture of his mistress, Walburga (Wally) Neuzil, is the pride of the Leopold Museum in Vienna. But for 13 years the painting was locked up in New York, caught in a legal battle between the Austrian museum and the Jewish family from whom the Nazis seized the painting in 1939.
PORTRAIT OF WALLY traces the history of this iconic image from Schieles' gesture of affection toward his young lover, to the theft of the painting from Lea Bondi, a Jewish art dealer fleeing Vienna for her life, to the post-war confusion and subterfuge that evoke THE THIRD MAN, to the surprise resurfacing of Wally on loan to the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan in 1997.
The Wally case brought the story of Nazi art loot into the open, eventually forcing museums in Europe and the U.S. to search their own collections for suspect objects. Many museums ended up returning art to Jewish families who had abandoned hope until Wally showed that institutions could be held accountable for holding property stolen during the Holocaust.
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Ratings and Reviews
- Average 7.2/10
- Fresh 27
- Rotten 3
Cast & Crew
- GRAVITAS VENTURES
- © 2012 Portrait of Wally Productions LLC
- English (Stereo, Dolby 5.1)
- Closed captions refer to subtitles in the available language with addition of relevant nondialogue information.