Showing results 13 - 24 of 33 for the month of December, 2010.

December 12, 2010

Peru’s president welcomes support from runners in New York Marathon in Yale University case

Posted at 11:45 pm in Similar cases

A group of American & Peruvian runners in the New York marathon are supporting Peru’s attempts to retrieve various disputed treasures from Machu Picchu, currently held by Yale University.

From:
Living In Peru

November 8, 2010 [ 9:02 ]
Peru’s president welcomes New York marathoners support in Yale case

Peruvian President Alan Garcia expressed confidence, last week, that the government will soon retrieve more than 40 thousand Inca artifacts removed from Machu Picchu nearly a century ago and held by Yale University as this is a “just and legitimate” cause.

In this regard, he welcomed a group of American and Peruvian athletes’ support, competing in yesterday New York marathon, to the government-backed campaign to recover the archaeological treasures.
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The life & adventures of Hiram Bingham

Posted at 11:41 pm in Similar cases

Considering the press coverage that the dispute between Peru & Yale University over various Machu Picchu artefacts has recently received, its interesting that a new book has just come out about Hiram Bingham – the person who removed many of these desputed items int he first place.

From:
SAFE

Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Cradle of Gold – Christopher Heaney
(Review by Andrew Vasicek)

In his book, Heaney utilizes an easy, conversational style to tell an interesting and surprising tale of the life and adventures of Hiram Bingham. The reader is treated to Indiana Jones-like stories of the explorer’s travels throughout Peru and of the wonderful discoveries he made. Heaney’s use of original sources is at times inspired and always appropriate. The little tidbits about Bingham and his family are often poignant and truly create a feeling in the reader that one knows the man himself.

At the same time, the reader is shown the sometimes shady underbelly of the profession of archaeology (or perhaps just “exploring”) and its connections to the mistreatment of indigenous people, the illicit artifact trade, and much more. Sadly, these practices date back hundreds or thousands of years, perhaps as far back as humanity has existed in a form resembling that of today.
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December 9, 2010

New Acropolis Museum voted Best Worldwide Tourism Project in 2010 by British Guild of Travel Writers

Posted at 10:35 pm in Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

The New Acropolis Museum has won the award of Best Worldwide Tourism project for 2010 by the British Guild of Travel Writers. Once again, this helps to raise the profile of the museum and highlights is suitability to accommodate the Parthenon Sculptures that are in the British Museum – removing the old argument that they could not be returned because there was nowhere suitable to put them if they were.

From:
Athens News Agency

New Acropolis Museum wins prestigious award
8 Nov 2010

The New Acropolis Museum in Athens has won the ‘ (BGTW) prestigious global award for the Best Worldwide Tourism Project for 2010.

The prize was presented to deputy culture and tourism minister Yiorgos Nikitiadis, representing the Greek government, during a ceremony on Sunday night in London.

Nikitiadis thanked the organisers and the voting travel writers, noting that this distinction has opened the door for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to their homeland. (ANA)

Can the British Museum forget the idea of imperialist looting and acquisitions?

Posted at 10:30 pm in Similar cases

As mentioned previously, Neil MacGregor’s series, A history of the world in 100 objects has now finished and has doubtlessly been more successful than the BBC ever imagined it would be. It has however provided a colossal platform for Neil MacGregor (and thus the British Museum’s) viewpoint.

Mary Beard argues here that the series manages to “Forget the idea of imperialist looting or acquisitiveness”, but I’m wondering whether this is not more a case of wishful thinking by the British Museum that people would forget it, as the reality is that for many people (mostly located outside the UK & not necessarily Radio 4 or World Service” listeners), the imperialist looting which is perpetuated today within the British Museum is a continuing source of anguish.

From:
Guardian

A History of the World in 100 Objects by Neil MacGregor – review
Brilliant on radio, Neil MacGregor’s 100 objects also make a marvellous book, says Mary Beard
Mary Beard
The Guardian, Saturday 13 November 2010

Chapter 33 of Neil MacGregor’s marvellous book-of-the-radio-series is about the Rosetta stone. This lump of granite from Egypt, “about the size of one of those large suitcases you see people trundling around on wheels at airports”, is, as he frankly admits, “decidedly dull to look at”. It earns its place in A History of the World in 100 Objects because in the 19th century the equally dull text – on tax breaks for priests, inscribed upon it, in three different languages (Greek, demotic Egyptian and hieroglyphs) – became the key to decoding the hieroglyphic script of the ancient pharaohs.

But, more than that, the stone also has a powerful modern history of its own. It was fought over by French and British troops at the end of the Napoleonic wars, and finally taken to London. MacGregor is one of the few to point out that it is actually inscribed in four, not three, languages: on its side, we can still read, in English, “Captured in Egypt by the British Army in 1801.”
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Opposition to Korean manuscript return from French Librarians

Posted at 2:11 pm in Similar cases

More coverage of the resistance by Biblitheque Nationale staff in France to the proposed return of various looted manuscripts to Korea.

From:
Digital Chosun ilbo

French Librarians Oppose Return of Korean Royal Texts
Nov. 19, 2010 09:33 KST

Opposition is mounting in France against the return of royal Korean archives looted during a botched invasion in the 19th century and held in the French national library. Librarians at the Bibliothèque nationale de France (BnF) in a statement Thursday protested against the return of the 297 volumes of the Oegyujanggak royal archives, which was agreed in a recent summit in Seoul between President Lee Myung-bak and French President Nikolas Sarkozy.

The statement of opposition was signed by around 10 officials led by Thierry Delcourt, the director of the manuscripts department.
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Italian policeman locates looted statue in New York

Posted at 2:06 pm in Similar cases

An Italian policeman on holiday in New York spotted a statue stolen from a museum in Rome in 1980.

From:
Agence France Presse

Italian policeman in New York finds stolen statue
(AFP) – Nov 19, 2010

ROME — The return from the United States of a precious Roman artefact stolen from an Italy museum is thanks to an Italian policeman who strolled through New York on holiday this year, officials said on Friday.

Walking down Madison Avenue, the officer from Italy’s cultural heritage police noticed the marble torso on sale for 350,000 dollars (256,000 euros) in a gallery’s display, they said.
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December 8, 2010

French Bibliothèque Nationale staff speak out agains return of Korean manuscripts

Posted at 11:17 pm in Similar cases

Following the recent announcement by France’s president that the Bibliothèque Nationale would return numerous looted manuscripts to Korea has led to a backlash by librarians from the BNF. This issue (where the president makes decision without first discussing it with all stakeholders, followed by a subsequent backlash) is very similar to what happened with the Palermo fragment of the Parthenon Frieze in 2006, whereby the Italian president stated that the fragment would be returned, but had not discussed this with the museum in Sicily which held it, leading to a very lengthy delay before the fragment finally arrived in Athens.

The BNF staff have responded by creating a petition against the return of the manuscripts.

From:
Jesigne

Statut de la pétition

Declaration of On the fringes of G20 summit in Seoul, the President of the Republic has announced the return to South Korea of a vast collection of Korean manuscripts held by the Bibliothèque nationale de France since 1867. It should not be forgotten that copies of most of these manuscripts exist in Korea.

– the decision was taken against the advice of the Bibliothèque and of the Ministry of Culture, which for years have pleaded in favour in agreements involving reciprocity or corresponding benefits (exchange, mutual loans etc.). Any such possibility has now been abandoned.
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Information on over ten thousand un-restituted artworks looted by the Nazis available online

Posted at 11:06 pm in Similar cases

More than sixty years on, vast numbers of artworks looted by the Nazis still haven’t been returned to their original owners (or their descendants). A new database which lists these items hopes to make it a lot easier for people to track them down.

From:
PR Newswire

More Than 10,000 Unrestituted Nazi-Looted Art Objects Now Listed on Internet; Call to Museums, Dealers to Check Holdings
NEW YORK, Oct. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/

The Nazi records and photographs of the looting of more than 20,000 individual art objects from Jews in France and Belgium are now online in a searchable database, which shows that at least half the objects have not been restituted to their original owners. This new listing – searchable by item, artist, owner, and whether items have been returned – should be consulted by museums, art dealers, and auction houses to determine whether they hold any Nazi-looted art, and by families seeking long-lost valuable heirlooms.

Many families know or believe that relatives killed in the Holocaust owned artworks, but may do not know the pieces’ names or artists; this list can help them search family holdings. However, there is no centralized claims process for unrestituted works in this database. Unlike previous attempts to identify looted art, which have focused on museum collections or lists of claims from individual victims or their heirs, this new database aims to reconstruct the totality of what was seized and from whom, as well as what has been restituted, so as to produce a listing of looted art objects still believed to be “at large.”
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Do recent artefact returns erode James Cuno’s idea of an Encyclopaedic Museum?

Posted at 2:10 pm in Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

Jim O’Donnell has written an interesting review of James Cuno’s book on the so-called Encyclopaedic Museum.

As with many other readers of this book, he has come across gaping flaws in some of the arguments presented by Cuno.

From:
Around The World in Eighty Years

Book Review: “Who Owns Antiquity? Museums and the Battle Over Our Ancient Heritage”
Posted on November 15, 2010

Last week, New York’s Metropolitan Museum announced that it will return 19 objects from King Tut’s tomb to Egypt – 19 small bits and fragments. The Met has been quick to toot its own horn, saying the return of these objects was voluntary and that they were under no legal obligation to do anything. But we’re not talking the Rosetta Stone here. Nor the famous Nefertiti bust held in Berlin. Nor the incredible Haremhad statue detained at the Met. Nineteen trinkets is nothing to crow about. Ahhh but the magnanimous purveyos of culture will crow.

Stolen objects that reside in the great museums of the world are nothing more than a monument to imperialism and the days of overt exploitation.
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Finders Keepers – a story of archaeological looting

Posted at 2:00 pm in Similar cases

Another review of Craig Child’s book about the looting of Archaeological sites.

From:
SAFE

Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Finders Keepers – Craig Childs
(Review by Andrew Vasicek)

As it turns out, the author’s title is unbelievably appropriate as it describes the essence of the entirety of the book – a personal reaction to the discovery of artifacts.

Childs sets out to describe the history behind humanity’s need to understand its past. He artfully crafts a story based in part on his own personal, and very diverse, travels about the globe. He tells of grand discoveries as often as simple broken pots. Childs successfully creates a sense that each item has a tale to tell and is valuable for that alone, if nothing else. He also notes the vast disparity between people of all walks of life in terms of how they interact with, and understand, the past as embodied in ruins and artifacts. Archaeologists, collectors, looters, and families all make their appearances; all lending their views on the issues and all are given due consideration by Childs.
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December 7, 2010

International colloquium on the protection & return of cultural property

Posted at 2:59 pm in Elgin Marbles, Events, New Acropolis Museum, Similar cases

On Friday 10th December, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in Greece is hosting an International colloquium on the protection & return of Cultural Property.

It is to take place in the ampitheatre of the New Acropolis Museum in Athens, from 12:30 to 19:30.

The event is organised by the University of Athens, Acropolis Museum, Foundation for International Legal Studies & the Council of Hellenes Abroad.

Please contact me directly if you would like further information about this event, as I only have it in PDF format.

A conversation about the New Acropolis Museum with Dimitrios Pantermalis

Posted at 2:02 pm in New Acropolis Museum

New Acropolis Museum director, Professor Dimitrios Pandermalis, gave a talk at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, about the museum & his aims & aspirations for it.

From:
National Gallery of Art

November 2010
Notable Lecture
The New Acropolis Museum: A Conversation with Dimitrios Pandermalis

Dimitrios Pandermalis, president of the board of directors, Acropolis Museum, and professor of archaeology, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, in conversation with Selma Holo, professor of art history, director of the International Museum Institute, and director of the Fisher Museum of Art, University of Southern California, and Faya Causey, head of academic programs, National Gallery of Art.
Professor Dimitrios Pandermalis provides an overview of the construction of the new Acropolis Museum in this podcast recorded on October 17, 2010. Designed by Bernard Tschumi and completed in 2009, the 262,000-square-foot museum rises at the foot of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece. This lecture reveals the challenges and responsibilities of creating a modern building atop sensitive archaeological excavations, within the Athens city grid, facing the Parthenon—one of the most influential buildings in Western civilization—and housing ancient sculptures and decorative arts excavated from the Acropolis. This lecture was coordinated with and supported by the American Friends of the Acropolis Museum and the Embassy of Greece in Washington, DC.

The full recording is available to download as a podcast here.