Seized artworks frozen on Diag Human appeal

15-07-2011

A Viennese court has satisfied the demand of Swiss company Diag Human to freeze the transfer of three Czech artworks being held in judicial limbo as collateral for damages. The two paintings and one sculpture by Czech modernist artists will therefore not be returned to the Czech Republic until the company’s appeal is reviewed. Diag Human is suing the Czech state for over 500 million US dollars for allegedly thwarting its blood plasma business in the country in the 1990s. The Viennese court seized the artworks as compensation, but later overruled its decision on the grounds that they were exempt from seizure as cultural property. The works of art had been on loan for an exhibition in Vienna when they were seized.