April 20, 2011

British Museum director tries to block sale of artworks from Aukland Castle

Posted at 12:57 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

As if, being encumbered by anti-deaccessioning rules, yet continually trying to find ways around them (when it suits), isn’t enough, the British Museum’s director is objecting to the sale of artworks from a private collection. This is despite the fact that the acquisition of the paintings were from a ship that was seized – and therefore, not exactly intended to be a part of the history of the Church of England when they were created.

Typically Spanish

Church of England plans to sell 12 works by Zurbarán
By h.b. – Feb 8, 2011 – 1:37 PM
There are protests about the planned sale in the U.K.

The Church of England plans to sell 12 works from the Spanish painter, Francisco de Zurbarán, considered to be one of the moral symbols of the institution.

A row is breaking out over the future sale of Las doce tribus de Israel, Jacob y sus hijos, which have been decorating the halls of Auckland Castle in Durham since the 18th century.
The works date from about 1640 and were headed for the United States, but the boat carrying them was attacked by British pirates who then reportedly sold them to the best bidder.

The twelve canvasses, and one fake, are set to be sold at public auction, and are expected to obtain 18 million €.

However there is an active campaign against the sale. Neil McGregor, Director of the British Museum, is among those opposing the sale of the paintings. He showed them in 1994 in the National Gallery in London and the following year in the Prado in Madrid, and declared to The Times last week,

‘There are no paintings, in my opinion, which speak in such a powerful way of the commitment of the Church of England to society’.

The final decision on the sale is in the hands of the Bishops synod which meet in London later this month.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Possibly related articles

Tags: , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. DR.KWAME OPOKU said,

    04.23.11 at 5:33 pm

    Is anybody really surprised by this attitude? The sheer greed of the so-called “universal museums” of which the British Museum is a good example is by now an established fact. These museums have more objects than they can ever show and yet want more and are prepared to prevent others from acquiring objects of value. According to BBC News, the British Museum has some 8 million objects most of which the venerable museum cannot display for lack of space. http://news.bbc.co.uk Yet the internationalist director, who believes in free circulation of objects, is not prepared to see these objects go to other countries. He is also determined to prevent countries such as Nigeria from recovering looted artefacts. May be there are voices in Great Britain that can persuade the British Museum not to prevent others from acquiring such objects. Kwame Opoku.

RSS feed for comments on this post

Leave a Comment

We want to hear your views. Be as critical or controversial as you like, but please don't get personal or offensive. Remember this is for feedback and constructive discussion!
Comments may be edited or removed if they do not meet these guidelines. Repeat offenders will be blocked from posting further comments. Any comment deemed libellous by Elginism's editors will be removed.
The commenting system uses some automatic spam detection and occasionally comments do not appear instantly - please do not repost comments if they do not show up straight away