A descendant of former owners of a Picasso painting with a controversial Nazi-era history sued to recover the canvas scheduled to be auctioned Wednesday, prompting Christie’s auction house officials to withdraw it from sale.

Christie’s and the Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber Art Foundation, a London-based charity that owns the piece, said that “with great reluctance” they were withdrawing “the magnificent Blue Period ‘Portrait de Angel Fernandez de Soto’” from the Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale catalog.