Showing results 1 - 12 of 15 for the tag: Context.

August 28, 2014

Parthenon Marbles should return, because of their beauty

Posted at 12:43 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles

Jonathan Jones argues persuasively in the Guardian, that the Marbles should eb returned. Key to his reasoning is the matter of context, something that I have often argued about previously. No matter what the British Msueum says, it is impossible to see the Marbles in the same way in the British Museum as it would be in the Acropolis Museum, within sight of the Parthenon.

Parthenon Marbles in British Museum

Parthenon Marbles in British Museum


18th August 2014
Jonathan Jones
The Parthenon marbles are the world’s most beautiful art – and that’s why we should give them back
These consummately beautiful sculptures demand a proper setting – and a trip to Athens has convinced me the Acropolis Museum is that place

What can you do with the world’s most beautiful art? Where does it belong? How should it be cared for and displayed?

The art in question is the array of sculpture created in Athens in the 5th century BC to decorate the Parthenon, the temple to Athena that still, today, dominates the skyline of the Greek capital.
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April 4, 2012

Why the Acropolis Museum is the most appropriate place for the Parthenon Marbles

Posted at 12:42 pm in Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

A reader responds to the article in the Guardian about the reasons why the Parthenon Marbles weren’t the only special case for restitution.


Series: Brief letters
Tuesday 3 April 2012 21.00 BST

Mike Pitts (Can we have our past back?, G2, 3 April) writes “it should be noted that none of the Parthenon sculptures can be set on the original building, they have to be exhibited in museums, wherever they may be”. There is only one appropriate museum, constructed in the hope of the sculptures’ eventual return: the excellent Acropolis museum. Here there is a full-scale reconstruction of the Parthenon, on the same alignment, and within view of it. The casts that now adorn it could be sent to Britain, and the originals returned to their rightful place.

Mary Lambell
Reigate, Surrey

March 23, 2012

Bronze age treasures returned to Lake District town

Posted at 9:06 am in British Museum, Similar cases

Yet again, the focus on ancient artefacts found in the UK relates (quite rightly in most cases) to re-locating them back to their place of discovery, and highlighting the work that needs to be done locally to discover more about their origins – yet when we look at foreign artefacts here only as the result of looting, the contextual arguments are regularly ignored.


Bronze Age treasure returns to Ambleside
Swords, dagger and spear are re-identified after years on private display in Royal properties. Guest blogger Eileen Jones reports from the shores of Windermere
Posted by Eileen Jones
Monday 28 November 2011 11.00 GMT

Yet another Northern hoard is making news, following recent discoveries in Yorkshire and Furness, the historic slice of Lancashire gobbled up by Cumbria in 1973/4.

This time it is Ambleside in the Lake District which is making news – and with a curious twist. Its collection of Bronze Age weaponry was discovered 270 year ago. Archaeologists are now trying to find out exactly where.
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March 19, 2012

Viking hoard returns to Harrogate

Posted at 6:20 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

This is far from the first time, that displaying artefacts near to where they were discovered is seen as important when it is within the UK. When similar requests are made by countries such as Greece or Egypt though, it is described as cultural nationalism.

Ripon Gazette

Wednesday 21 September 2011
Viking hoard returns to Harrogate
Published on Wednesday 21 September 2011 12:00

THE Vale of York Viking hoard returned to the district in which it was discovered last week, when it went on display at Harrogate’s Mercer Art Gallery.

The treasure, which will be on loan to the gallery until January 15, was found in 2007 by father-and-son David and Andrew Whelan.
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March 17, 2012

Frome Hoard returns to Somerset

Posted at 2:50 pm in Similar cases

The Frome Hoard returns to Somerset to be displayed, near to where it was discovered. Yet again, it seems that displaying artefacts near to where they were found is perceived as a great idea by museums – but only if the artefacts aren’t already in their collections, in which case the argument for display within the original context can be discredited by every means possible & ignored in the hope that it will go away.

BBC News

5 September 2011 Last updated at 08:21
Frome Hoard returns to Somerset for museum display

The Frome Hoard, the second largest collection of Roman coins found in the UK, is to be brought back from the British Museum to Somerset later.

The coins will go on display at the new Museum of Somerset, in Taunton, which opens at the end of the month.
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November 10, 2011

Frome Hoard to remain in Somerset

Posted at 2:11 pm in Similar cases

In much the same way as with the Staffordshire Hoard, everyone thinks it is a great idea that the Frome Hoard should be displayed close to where it was found. The same principle however is deemed as less relevant with items such as the Parthenon Marbles.

BBC News

21 March 2011 Last updated at 03:24
Frome Hoard of Roman coins to stay in Somerset

The largest ever collection of Roman coins found in Britain in one pot will stay in the county where it was unearthed.

The Museum of Somerset has raised £320,250 to keep the Frome Hoard. There had been fears it would go to London.
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November 7, 2011

What remains when art is removed from its context?

Posted at 1:59 pm in Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

This article argues something that I have often tried to explain – that without their context, artworks lose their meaning. Nowhere is this more the case, than with the Parthenon Sculptures. These works were always designed to be seen on the Acropolis – they formed an integral part of the building & were specifically designed to tell a story as a visitor moved past the building.

Los Angeles Times

Critic’s Notebook: Remove art from its architectural context, and what’s left?
The cases of a reputed Banksy piece in Detroit and Le Corbusier’s work in Chandigarh, India, raise complicated questions.
March 12, 2011|By Christopher Hawthorne, Los Angeles Times Architecture Critic

When we debate the endlessly tricky subjects of cultural patrimony and looted art, the pieces that usually come to mind are marble statues from classical antiquity or paintings stolen and stashed away during wartime. Not street art. And certainly not manhole covers.

But thanks to Banksy, the elusive London-based artist, as well as fresh questions about the fate of Chandigarh, the Indian city designed in the 1950s by Modernist architect Le Corbusier, preparatory notes for a new chapter in this long story have shown up in the press in recent days.
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October 30, 2010

A compelling reason why the Parthenon Sculptures should be reunified in Athens

Posted at 7:49 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

There are many different reasons put forward for the restitution of the Elgin Marbles to Athens, most of which are strong enough to stand up as sufficient justification on their own, even if the other arguments were removed. In this case, it is the argument for presenting the sculptures in the context of the Parthenon itself that holds the most weight with Nick Thornsby.

Nick Thornsby’s blog

Thoughts on the Parthenon Marbles
Posted on September 17, 2010

I’m in London today, because this morning I took part in a ‘bloggers’ interview’ with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg. I’ll be blogging about that soon.

However no visit to London is complete without a visit to one of my favourite places – the British Museum. I particularly wanted to go today because a couple of months ago I was in Athens and visited the New Acropolis Museum, where most of the Parthenon marbles are displayed – many of the remaining marbles, of course, are displayed here in the British Museum.
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December 22, 2009

How were the Benin Bronzes originally meant to be displayed

Posted at 1:48 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

Much is said about context – not least by the British Museum. The reality though is that the original context for which many artefacts were designed was very different from the museum environments in which they are currently displayed.

Modern Ghana

Forever Bronze
By Tam Fiofori

According to Omo N’Oba N’Edo Erediauwa, Benin bronzes were not meant to be kept in museums and used as decorative pieces. Rather, bronzes filled in for the absence of photography in Benin traditional society and the Oba’s court as bronze castings were specifically used to depict and document important events and activities of a reigning Oba of Benin.

Put another way, the thousands of Benin bronzes which were looted by the British from the Oba’s palace in 1897 and, are now in the British Museum, London, and in other museums and private collections in the ‘western’ world represent a ‘stolen library of the history of the Benin Kingdom’ and their rightful place remains the various ancestral spiritual altars/shrines within the Oba’s palace in Benin City.
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December 4, 2009

Nefertiti in splendid isolation?

Posted at 1:52 pm in Similar cases

Kwame Opoku looks at how the bust of Nefertiti, on display in Berlin’s Neues Museum, is in many ways isolated from its original context – showing that context is not just important for understanding large in-situ pieces such as the Parthenon Sculptures.

Modern Ghana

By Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | Mon, 16 Nov 2009

“The history of the bust of Nefertiti shows very clearly how hollow it can sound when Germans and other Europeans refer to legal principles in relation to the “Third World.”
Gert von Paczensky and Herbert Ganslymayr (1)

The intensive and extensive publicity surrounding the re-opening of the Neues Museum in Berlin and the renewed demands by Zahi Hawass made it inevitable that all those interested in restitution of looted/stolen cultural objects would pay attention to the recent celebration of the renovated museum on the Museums Island in Berlin.(2)
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June 22, 2009

Holograms may be used to display historic artefacts

Posted at 11:49 am in British Museum, Similar cases

The British Museum regularly asserts that artefacts are best displayed there. Much of what they do though indicates that like most others, they believe that there is an importance attached to the original context of artefacts. That it is important to show artefacts within the vicinity of where they were found. It’s just that they’d prefer to keep the artefacts for themselves too.

Evening Leader

Holograms to display historic artefacts at North Wales museums
Published Date: 19 June 2009

LLANGOLLEN museum, along with a number of others in North Wales, is to start using holograms to display historic artefacts.
The institutions, along with View Holographics, based in St Asaph, have been successful in securing funding from the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation to create a project, called Bringing the Artefacts Back to the People.

The scheme will use pioneering holographic technology to display works, described as the closest reproduction possible to the real life object and more realistic than photography and computer rendering.
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May 23, 2009

New Acropolis Museum will re-open the Elgin Marbles case

Posted at 5:26 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

From the inception of its concept, the New Acropolis Museum was designed with the principal aim of providing the best possible home for the Parthenon Sculptures. As such it will present the most persuasive argument yet that it gives the best context for the display of the fragments currently held in the British Museum.

Because of the importance of the contextual argument, it is not possible to replicate the New Acropolis Museum somewhere else – even if the British wanted to, they could never create a space for the display of the Elgin Marbles that would equal the one in Athens.

The Independent

Elgin Marbles question renewed as Athens museum opens
By Frank Partridge
Saturday, 23 May 2009

The long-overdue New Acropolis Museum is now scheduled to open in Athens on 20 June. However, the impact will be felt most acutely in Bloomsbury, central London, as one of Britain’s longest-running international disputes takes a potentially decisive turn.

Athens’ share of the marble sculptures that once adorned the Parthenon temple on Acropolis hill, the crowning achievement of classical Greece, now have a permanent home 300 metres below the original site. The glassy, angular new museum is daring and eye-catching in itself, but it’s the contents of the third and top floor – and the way they’re arranged – that will make the world sit up and take notice.
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