Showing results 61 - 72 of 74 for the month of June, 2009.

June 15, 2009

British Museum officials to attend New Acropolis Museum opening

Posted at 9:13 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

Much is being made in the press about the rejection of a supposed Elgin Marbles loan deal that never existed in the first place. Unfortunately, many more interesting facts about the opening are being drowned out by the noise made by this story.

Agence France Presse

British Museum to attend Greek launch despite marbles spat
2 days ago

LONDON (AFP) — British Museum officials will attend the inauguration of Greece’s New Acropolis Museum next week, it said Friday but insisted its stance on the long-disputed Parthenon Marbles remains unchanged.

A spokeswoman for the museum also stressed that it had not made an offer nor received a request for those sculptures held in London to be loaned to Athens, following comments by a Greek minister this week.
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June 12, 2009

The New Acropolis Museum – an anti-Bilbao

Posted at 8:58 pm in Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

Bernard Tschumi describes the New Acropolis Museum as an anti-Bilbao museum, in reference to Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum. This should not be seen as a criticism of Gehry’s work, but more a description of the way in which the two buildings operate. The Gugenheim in Bilbao was all about creating an object, building a new context that would draw people to a relatively obscure Spanish city. The building’s sculptural form is now far more famous than its contents that are of secondary importance for many. On the other hand, the New Acropolis Museum sits in the context of one of the most famous works of architecture in the world – so quite rightly does not try to compete with it. Tschumi’s design is all about the contents of the building – relating these artefacts back to their original context through careful design, in a way that despite its vast physical presence, the building itself fades into the background as a mere framework for the viewing of the pieces within.


A hard act to follow: the New Acropolis
12 June 2009
By Dan Stewart

This is the New Acropolis museum, and it’s located a two-minute stroll from the most famous building in the world. So how did the architect handle that brief?

Bernard Tschumi’s long-awaited New Acropolis Museum is to open this month in Athens. The €130m (£113m) building was first mooted as long ago as 1976, when the first of four competitions was held. In 2000, Bernard Tschumi, a deconstructivist French architect known principally for his Parc de la Villette in Paris, won the fourth, and final brief.
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Elgin Marbles lecture in Switzerland

Posted at 8:54 pm in Elgin Marbles

A lecture in Switzerland on the New Acropolis Museum has been organised by the Swiss Committee for the Return of the Parthenon Marbles.

Athens News Agency

Lecture on Acropolis Museum

The Alliance Francaise in Bern, Switzerland, organised a lecture on the theme of “The New Acropolis Museum – An opportunity for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece?”, in the presence of a large Swiss audience.

The speaker was Olivier Vodoz, Vice President of the International Red Cross and Vice President of the Swiss Committee for the Return of the Parthenon Marbles.
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British Museum refutes Parthenon Marbles loan reports

Posted at 8:46 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

As more information becomes available on this story, it seems that my initial suspicions were right & that no loan offer was ever made.

Associated Press

UK museum refutes report of Greek antiquities loan
2009-06-11 23:19:03

ATHENS, Greece (AP) – The British Museum is refuting a Greek radio report saying it offered part of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece on a three-month loan.
A museum spokeswoman says the broadcaster had based its report on a statement referring to the museum’s standard policy for loaning objects.
Hannah Boulton says the museum has «not received any loan request for the Parthenon sculptures.

Earlier Thursday, Greece’s Culture Minister Antonis Samaras had rejected such a deal, saying it would mean renouncing any Greek claim to the 2,500-year-old sculptures. Greece hopes one day to display the works beside its own surviving Parthenon sections in a new museum opening next weekend.
The works originally decorated the Parthenon temple on the Acropolis of Athens.

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Was an Elgin Marbles loan offer ever made?

Posted at 8:38 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

Without further information, it seems to me that the latest story regarding the rejection of a potential loan of the Parthenon Marbles does not make sense. There was never a loan offer as such – everything seems to be based on the prerequisites laid out by the British Museum in many previous statements on what conditions would need to be met before a loan could take place (not specifically of the Parthenon Marbles – in theory it would be the same with any artefact). This situation has not changed, so is hardly newsworthy, although the Marbles are obviously on the agenda for the press this week with the imminent opening of the New Acropolis Museum in a few days time.
Further to the above point though, it is not clear that there was never any loan offer made by the British Museum. Even if it is take as an assumed offer based on other statements, this does not sound very definite, as many other potential loans may meet the prerequisite condition, but then be rejected for other reasons.

Bloomberg News

Greece Rejects British Museum’s Terms for Elgin Marbles Loan
By Maria Petrakis

June 11 (Bloomberg) — Greece said it won’t accept the British Museum’s conditions for allowing the Elgin Marbles, a collection of disputed ancient artworks, to go on display at the New Acropolis Museum.

Culture Minister Antonis Samaras said the museum’s loan condition — that Greece acknowledge the fifth-century B.C. antiquities as the property of the British Museum — would be unacceptable to any Greek government.
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June 11, 2009

Afghan retrieves it’s looted past

Posted at 8:33 pm in Similar cases

After years of internal conflict, Afghanistan has lost many of the records of its past to opportunistic looters. Efforts are being made however to catalogue & retrieve the artefacts for future generations to enjoy.

BBC News

Page last updated at 17:25 GMT, Wednesday, 10 June 2009 18:25 UK
Looted treasures return to Afghanistan
By Sarah Rainsford
BBC News, Kabul

In a small room inside Kabul museum, staff are slowly unwrapping hundreds of stolen pieces of Afghanistan’s past.

Worth a fortune on the black market, the smugglers’ hoard was spotted and seized by customs officers at Heathrow airport in London.
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Rare book on Elgin Marbles for sale

Posted at 8:29 pm in Elgin Marbles

A rare book on the Parthenon Marbles was spotted in a donation to a charity shop is Scotland.

Press & Journal (Aberdeen)

Elgin Marbles book found at charity shop
Volunteer wants to get the best price for valuable hardback
Published: 11/06/2009

STAFF in a Moray charity shop have discovered a book about the Elgin Marbles among donated titles.

Cancer Research UK volunteer John Mackintosh has learned that the hardback, called Parthenon – The Elgin Marbles, can be bought online at for £122.
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June 8, 2009

British Museum could return Roman tablets to Northumberland

Posted at 1:02 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

I’m intrigued by this story, as normally the British Museum is unable to return artefacts – this suggests that either:
A. the artefacts are only on loan to the British Museum at present
B. that the artefacts will only be returned as a loan by the British Museum or
C. that no one has considered this aspect yet.

BBC News

Page last updated at 14:36 GMT, Sunday, 7 June 2009 15:36 UK
Roman ‘expense’ tablets head home

Roman writing tablets highlighting the inflated expenses claims of public officials 2,000 years ago are to return to their Northumberland home.

The tablets were found at Vindolanda – a Roman encampment on Hadrian’s Wall -in 1973 and detail hundreds of expenses claimed by Roman officials.
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June 7, 2009

The New Acropolis Museum is almost open

Posted at 9:36 pm in Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

After eight years of construction, The New Acropolis Museum is now only days away from opening.


All is set for the opening of the New Acropolis museum
05 June 2009 :: 01:07:14
Maria Spassova

A frenzy of preparations are taking place in Athens where in two weeks the new Acropolis museum is going to have its inauguration. There haven’t been so many VIPs visiting and so much media attention centered on the Greek capital since the Olympic games in 2004. The official opening ceremony will take place on June 20, Saturday, at 8:00 PM. 200 persons of highest standing, including representatives of the world political, cultural and academic elite, will be the guests of honor at the ceremony, directed by Atina Tsangari, a name we know from the Summer Olympics in 2004. The event will include cutting the ribbon, a tour around the museum and a cocktail, after which the officials will participate in a sea-row around the Saronic Gulf on a luxury private jet.
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Seeing the Marbles reunified

Posted at 9:31 pm in Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

The New Acropolis Museum opens later this month, but opinion remains divided on whether the Elgin Marbles ought to eventually reside in it.


Romancing the Stones
By Cathleen McGuigan | NEWSWEEK
Published Jun 6, 2009
From the magazine issue dated Jun 15, 2009

It’s not polite to call the Elgin Marbles the Elgin Marbles anymore. Not even in the British Museum, where the ancient Greek sculptures and reliefs have resided since the early 19th century, after a British ambassador to the Ottoman Empire named Lord Elgin hacked them off the Parthenon. Even in that age of imperialism, many Brits saw Elgin’s acts as cultural vandalism. Lord Byron slammed the marbles’ removal in his bestselling epic poem Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage. The call for their return has grown since Greece won its independence from Ottoman rule in 1829, led by the Greek government in particular since the 1980s. In the noisy debate over the restitution of ancient artworks to their original locale, no case is more controversial or inflamed than the question of the Parthenon marbles: should the British finally send them back?
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New Acropolis Museum event in Washington

Posted at 9:26 pm in New Acropolis Museum

An event has been held in Washington to publicise the New Acropolis Museum, organised by the American Friends of the New Acropolis Museum.

Athens News Agency

Event for Acropolis Museum

WASHINGTON (ANA-MPA) — An event entitled “The Secrets of Parthenon” was held here to celebrate the opening of the New Acropolis Museum this month.

The event was co-organised by the organisation “American Friends of the New Acropolis Museum” as well as the National Museum of American History following an initiative of the Greek embassy in Washington.
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The looting of Iraq

Posted at 9:18 pm in Similar cases

The looting of the Iraq Museum was anticipated by many – yet the people who were in charge of the country seemed wholly unprepared for dealing with the situation.

The National (Abu Dhabi)

Were there that many vases?
Last Updated: June 04. 2009 11:37AM UAE / June 4. 2009 7:37AM GMT

The remarkable fact about the looting of the Iraq Museum, Hugh Eakin writes, is not how little it was anticipated – but how much it was forewarned.

The Rape of Mesopotamia: Behind the Looting of the Iraq Museum
Lawrence Rothfield
University of Chicago Press

In February, 2003, about a month before the invasion of Iraq, a former American diplomat quietly flew to Baghdad to meet with Tariq Aziz, Saddam Hussein’s deputy prime minister. A Middle East hand who served in the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, William R Polk was on an improbable mission: he was hoping to persuade the Baathist regime to remove the unparalleled collections of Baghdad’s Iraq Museum to Jordan for safekeeping. This was no mere whim. The heads of the Smithsonian, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the British Museum, the Oriental Institute of Chicago and the American Museum of Natural History in New York were to co-sponsor the project; the Jordanians told Polk they were prepared to give the green light, pending Baghdad’s consent. The well-connected Polk had even secured private funding to cover the cost of packing and shipping the collection to Amman. With a US invasion now almost certain, however, the Iraqis had other things to worry about. The plan went nowhere.
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