Showing results 541 - 552 of 675 for the tag: Cultural Property.

August 17, 2009

Call for Papers – Who owns Africa’s cultural patrimony

Posted at 1:03 pm in British Museum, Events, Similar cases

Submissions are invited for a special edition of Critical Interventions on Africa’s cultural heritage in the museums of the West.

From:
Kwame Opoku (by email)

Critical Interventions: Journal of African Art History and Visual Culture – Fall 2010
By Kwame Opoku
WHO OWNS AFRICA’S CULTURAL PATRIMONY?

Critical Interventions invites submissions for a special issue on the question of Africa’s cultural patrimony in Western museums, especially in the context of recent international debates about repatriation of historical artworks relocated from one culture to another through conquest, colonization or looting. In the first decade of the 21st Century, demands by various countries for repatriations of significant artworks and cultural objects have shaken up established ideas about the ownership and location of historical cultural objects. While many Western museums have been willing to reach agreements about repatriating or compensating for culturally important artworks in their collections claimed by other Western countries, there has been no acknowledgement of the right of Africans to ownership of African artworks looted from Africa during colonialism, which are now held in the so-called “Universal Museums” of the West. Read the rest of this entry »

Museums & governments must enter into dialogues over looted artefacts

Posted at 12:56 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

The Director of the National Museum of African Art, part of the Smithsonian Institution talks about partnerships with museums abroad. The issue of repatriation is also discussed, with the suggestion that there should be a serious dialogue going on to resolve some of these cases. All too often unfortunately, institutions such as the British Museum make pre-requisite demands that must be satisfied before talks can take place – as an effective way of neutering any possible discussions.

From:
The Guardian (Nigeria)

Saturday, August 15, 2009
Africa Must Partner To Correct Marginalisation, says Johnetta Cole

SINCE the beginning of the year the National Museum, Lagos has been in the centre of intense efforts to reposition it to play its pivotal role of showcasing Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage to the world. Such recent efforts saw the director of the National Museum of African Art at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, US, Dr. Johnetta Betsch Cole visiting Nigeria in a partnership being forged by the Ford Foundation. In this interview with ANOTE AJELUOROU, she talks about the timeliness of the partnership between the two institutions and the Owo art exhibition being planned to commemorate Nigeria’s 50th Independence anniversary in the US and Nigeria.
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The repatriation of human remains from Britain’s museums

Posted at 12:42 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

The reunification of human remains held in museums with Aboriginal groups is a hot topic at the moment in Australia. The Human Tissue Act made the return of many such artefacts possible, but there are still many who claim that such returns are removing a key source of scientific & anthropological study – to the detriment of the institutions that currently held the artefacts.

Listen to the original programme here.

From:
ABC (Australia)

Regarding human remains
12 August 2009
The collection and display of human remains and human body parts were once legitimate activities for the great universal museums. Rear Vision tracks the changes in attitudes towards such displays from outside the museum world as well as from within.

CLACKING/CHANTING

Man: We’re gathered here today to welcome our old people back home.

Reporter: The Naranjeri remains were stolen from 27 gravesites between 1898 and 1906 by the controversial Adelaide coroner, Dr William Ramsay Smith. He sold livers, hearts and skeletons on the open market, all in the name of research.

Keri Phillips: During the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, collectors, traders and amateur and professional scientists from the developed world amassed enormous collections from all over the globe. These collections often contained human remains, everything from tattooed human skin and skulls to the bones of lepers and other diseased body parts. Early on, but especially during the 20th century, many of these collections were bequeathed to museums but as time wore on and museums began to change from research institutions to places of public display, questions began to be raised both within and outside the museum community about the ethics and legality of the collection, retention and display of humans and human body parts. In recent decades, some museums have begun to repatriate their collection of human remains.
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August 11, 2009

What has been learned from the return of the Euphronios Krater?

Posted at 12:51 pm in Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

High profile restitution cases have created a shift in museum culture in recent years, but some of the people involved such as Philippe de Montebello, still claim to have no comprehension of why such actions took place.

From:
Modern Ghana

DO DIRECTORS OF “UNIVERSAL MUSEUMS” EVER LEARN FROM EXPERIENCE?
By Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | 1 day ago

It appears legitimate to question whether the directors of “universal museums” ever learn from experience. When we read the books and articles of James Cuno, Director of the Art Institute of Chicago, Neal MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, and Philippe de Montebello, former Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, we cannot escape the conclusion that, as far as restitution is concerned, these directors have not learnt anything from recent history and events. (1) This impression has been confirmed by statements made by Philippe de Montebello at Rockland, Maine, United States. (2)

Montebello, who had spoken about other issues, could not avoid discussing the question of restitution which has been brought again to the forefront by the opening of the New Acropolis Museum and the consequent pressure on the British Museum to return the Parthenon/Elgin Marbles that Lord Elgin caused to be removed from Athens in 1801 to 1812 under dubious circumstances. (3) The comments of the former Director of the Met on restitution were reported as follows:
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August 10, 2009

Where do the Elgin Marbles belong?

Posted at 1:02 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles

Both Greece & Britain argue that they have a claim to the Parthenon Marbles. The British case however is getting progressively weaker following the opening of the New Acropolis Museum & many decisions by other museums around the world to restore disputed artefacts to their original owners.

From:
Examiner

The Elgin Marbles: Where do they belong?
August 7, 12:49 PM – Archeological Travel Examiner
Gwynneth Anderson

…And so it happened that the Lapith peoples celebrated the wedding of the brave warrior Perithous to his fair maiden, Hippodame. All were invited to the nuptial feast – even the cloud-begotten race of Centaurs, those half men, half beasts. But when a bevy of glittering nymphs finally brought forth the lovely bride, the brutish centaur Eurytus, half crazed from wine and lust, rose from his place and attacked her, inciting his fellow centaurs to do the same.

Greatly angered, the mighty warrior Theseus snatched the bride free from her ghastly assaulter, smashing a heavy goblet against the head of Eurytus who fell thunderously to the floor, choking on his own blood, brains and teeth.
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July 27, 2009

Former Metropolitan Museum director talks about restitution of artefacts

Posted at 12:46 pm in Similar cases

Former Met director Philippe de Montebello has given a talk in which he speaks about the issues of restitution affecting museums. Based on previous comments, it is unsurprising that he is against the idea of restitution. What is puzzling is that even after the return of the Euphronios Krater from his own museum he still doesn’t seem to understand the problem – he sees it as something that should only ever be dealt with when legal reasons dictate that an artefacts should be returned & never for a philosophical / ethical reason. This skips neatly over the fact of why many of the laws allowing return are what they are, whereas legal action should be the last resort after other more amicable negotiation methods fail. He also introduces an odd idea of entitlement – that people should be able to see artefacts in locations other than their original locations (e.g. New York), but with little explanation of why this should be the case or who decides this.

From:
Bangor Daily News

7/25/09
Former Met director talks at Strand
By Jessica Bloch – BDN Staff

ROCKLAND, Maine — Philippe de Montebello is considered one of the most powerful men in the world of art. Yet de Montebello, who recently retired after 31 years as the director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, joked Thursday evening that he grew to dread the renowned art experts who worked under him.

“I have the utmost respect, and fear, of curators,” said de Montebello, who participated in a question-and-answer session at the Strand Theatre with Roger Dell, the Farnsworth Art Museum’s director of education, as part of the museum’s Farnsworth Forum series.
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July 22, 2009

Aboriginal artefacts not covered by the Human Tissue Act up for discussion

Posted at 1:05 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

There have been many cases in recent years where museums in the UK have returned Aboriginal artefacts that consist of (or incorporate) human remains. New negotiations involving bark etchings however are interesting, as there is no clear indication from the article that there is any connection with human remains. Technically this would mean that the British Museum was legally forbidden from returning them, although there is the possibility of some form of loan, as was used with the Kwakwaka’wakw mask returned to Canadian first Nations people.

From:
Melbourne Sun Herald

British Museum may hand back Aboriginal artifacts
AAP
July 22, 2009 12:21pm

THE British Museum has begun talks with Victorian Aboriginals about the possible return of rare bark etchings believed to be more than 150 years old.
The three etchings, estimated to be worth more than $1 million, have been held in London for many years after their collection by Victorian landowner John Hunter Kerr near Lake Boort in the 1850s.

When they were lent to Museum Victoria along with a ceremonial headdress for a temporary display in 2004, members of the Dja Dja Wurrung tribe dramatically seized hold of them and demanded they be returned to the Boort area.
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July 21, 2009

Neil MacGregor’s claims that the Elgin Marbles will not return

Posted at 12:59 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

For some reason, it appears that Neil MacGregor is now guaranteed positive coverage whenever he writes a piece for, or is interview by The Times. It seems that whatever claims he makes regarding his reasons for retention of the Parthenon Sculptures are accepted with little question or analysis.

The problem in many cases is that whilst what the British Museum is saying may be construed as a valid approach to take, it is represented as being the only valid approach, without considering the range of other possibilities or the views & sensibilities of others.

The Elgin Marbles or the Rosetta Stone may well have changed history – but there is no clear evidence that this was only the case because of the fact that they were in the British Museum.

Following the initial article are two more articles also on the British Museum, followed by a response by Kwame Opoku.

From:
The Times

July 18, 2009
Neil MacGregor lifts British Museum’s ambition to new heights
Tristram Hunt: Commentary

This is why the Elgin Marbles are not going back. With characteristic panache, Neil MacGregor is once again making the case for the British Museum as a museum of all mankind. In 100 episodes based around 100 objects from the Bloomsbury collection, Mr MacGregor aims to cement the British Museum’s Enlightenment credentials. And he’s doing so with some ambitious inter-disciplinary thinking.

To tell a story of the world in 15 minutes through a series of objects requires a sure grasp of cultural and social anthropology. Mr MacGregor, whose most celebrated exhibition during his tenure at the National Gallery was the Seeing Salvation display of Renaissance iconography, has long understood the allure of artefacts. Indeed, he is sometimes accused of seeking to blur — in an increasingly agnostic age — the boundaries between the secular and the religious by investing the British Museum’s objects with an almost spiritual significance. But in going beyond the obviously material, in explaining the broader cultural and social currency of the collection, he will give the story of these objects a relevance far in excess of their historic context.
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Looted Iraqi artefacts continue to appear on the international art market

Posted at 12:44 pm in Similar cases

Looting of artefacts is not a recent phenomenon – but despite every more stringent international laws, it continues to be a problem – leading to potential new disputes between countries in the future that no one yet knows about.

From:
PR Newswire

Looting Matters: Why Do Antiquities From Iraq Continue to Surface on the Market?
SWANSEA, Wales, July 17 /PRNewswire/

David Gill, archaeologist, considers how antiquities derived from Iraq continue to appear on the antiquities market.

The 2003 invasion of Iraq led to the loss of some 15,000 items from the archaeological collections in Baghdad. This alerted the international community to the scale of the problem and as a result some 6000 objects have been handed over to Iraqi authorities. These have been seized in a range of countries across the Middle East as well as in Europe.
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What’s in a name? Who owns the Rosetta Stone

Posted at 12:39 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

In a case that only tenuously relates to restitution claims, a software manufacturer is involved in legal action with Google over the fact that other companies may be taking out adverts that are set to appear when the name of their business is entered in a search. What makes this semi-relevant though is that the name of the company is Rosetta Stone – so one would have thought that at present any actual ownership claimed on the name might belong to the British Museum. Of course though this is not the end of the cycle either – Egypt disputes the British Museum’s ownership of the stone & as such would have the rights to the name of the stone.

The question that this raises, is what gives others the right to re-appropriate a term & call it their own, to the extent of trying to prevent others from using it – a situation not dis-similar from the British Museum’s current claims that artefacts such as the Rosetta Stone are now integral to their own collections & therefore can not be returned to their true owners.

From:
Telecom TV

Google v. Rosetta Stone: the case of the stolen words
Posted By TelecomTV One , 17 July 2009

What’s in a word? Often a lot of money for a start. And where there’s money there’s lawyers. And where there’s lawyers there is, sometimes, a measure of clarity. By Ian Scales.

At least the issues get a good outing. The Google v. Rosetta Stone case is currently raging in the US courts and it’s about when and to what extent a word could or should be controlled by those who claim it as a trademark.
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July 20, 2009

Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition leads to controversy over ownership

Posted at 12:54 pm in Similar cases

More coverage of the controversy surrounding the exhibition of the Dead Sea Scrolls at the Royal Ontario Museum.

From:
Forward – The Jewish Daily

Furor Over Dead Sea Scrolls Exhibition
By Michael Kaminer
Published July 15, 2009, issue of July 24, 2009.

Toronto — Crowds at the Royal Ontario Museum’s heavily hyped Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition — Dead Sea Scrolls: Words That Changed the World, which runs until January 3, 2010 — have far exceeded the museum’s own expectations. In the show’s first nine days, more than 18,000 people flocked to the museum’s spectacular new Daniel Libeskind-designed Michael Lee-Chin Crystal pavilion — about 52% above the exhibitors’ own projections.

But hosannas for the showing, featuring four scroll fragments on loan from the Israel Antiquities Authority and displayed in public for the first time, have not been universal. Last April, the Palestinian Authority appealed to Canada’s prime minister, Stephen Harper, to cancel the show, citing international conventions that make it illegal for a government agency to take archaeological artifacts from a territory that its country occupies.
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July 19, 2009

The Black Parthenon – an art instalation about cultural property restitution

Posted at 6:41 pm in Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

An art installation in Melbourne aims to raise awareness of the issues surrounding the Elgin Marbles in the British Museum, along with other repatriation cases around the world.

From:
GRReporter

Black Parthenon magic
14 July 2009 :: 11:28:19

A mourning installation appeared in Melbourne in the beginning of July, called “The Black Parthenon.” With the help of a black canvas in chiaroscuro lighting and quirked in a way, which resembles the original Athenian Acropolis, the Greek origin artist Konstantinos Dimopoulos expressed his support for the return of the Parthenon marbles back to Athens.

During the day the black tone installation looks like a funeral alter, which symbolizes the feeling of loss. The author dedicates it to all countries, who have become a subject of cultural-historic heritage theft. During the night, the installation is lid in bright blue and white tones, which make the Black Parthenon stand out and its silhouette reminds of the real Acropolis.
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