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Library explores British defence of German 'degenerate art'

Display to tell story of major UK exhibition held in 1938 to counter Nazi propaganda

They were often innocuous landscapes, conservative portraits and colourful modernist abstract paintings of nothing in particular, but to the Nazis the artworks were “sick”, “twisted” and “filth”.

The story of German “degenerate art” and the British defence of it is to be told in a display opening to the public on Wednesday at the Wiener library in London, the world’s oldest archive of material on the Holocaust and the Nazi era.

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