A Homecoming, in Los Angeles, for Five Klimts Looted by Nazis

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For most of the last 60 years, Maria Altmann did not know that the celebrated Klimt paintings hanging in the Austrian Gallery in Vienna actually belonged to her. And when she learned that they most likely did, she also knew that recovering them was probably an impossible quest.

But in an unexpected turn of events, the endless ripples of World War II history have washed up on the shore of a California museum, where this week the 90-year-old Mrs. Altmann came face to face with the sumptuous gold and sinuous lines of Gustav Klimt's portrait of her aunt, Adele Bloch-Bauer, painted in 1907, and on display for the next three months at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

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