April 30, 2007
The Indianapolis Museum of Art has recently announced a moratorium on any acquisitions of artefacts who’s provenance is questionable. Here, the director of the museum explains the justification for this decision.
The Art Newspaper
Why Indianapolis will no longer buy unprovenanced antiquities
By Maxwell Anderson | Posted 30 April 2007
The Indianapolis Museum of Art recently decided to impose a moratorium on acquiring antiquities that left their probable country of modern discovery after 1970, unless we can obtain documents establishing that they were exported legally.
The decision to declare this moratorium was an extremely difficult one. The short-term result will be to prevent our curators, particularly those in the fields of Asian and classical art, from soliciting or accepting gifts from generous donors who bought works of art in good faith. It will adversely affect dealers who have heretofore been able to count on IMA as a regular buyer of significant works. But we hope it will be a small step towards stemming the tide of illegal excavation or clandestine removal of accidentally discovered objects from countries the world over.
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