Showing results 85 - 96 of 114 for the tag: London.

May 21, 2010

99% of the British Museum is not on public display

Posted at 6:53 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

When the return of artefacts is mentioned, institutions such as the British Museum argue that it would empty their collections, leaving them with nothing to display. The reality however is that the British Museum has so many artefacts in their collection (that they are not allowed to sell, return or otherwise de-accession) that only one percent of the collection is currently on public display.

They do allow the public to visit the items not on display – but for most people this is not possible, for the simple reason that as the artefacts are not on display, they don’t know that they are there in the first place.

From:
BBC News

Page last updated at 08:38 GMT, Wednesday, 31 March 2010 09:38 UK
The 99% of the British Museum not on show

In the BBC Radio 4 series A History of the World in 100 Objects, the rise of civilisation is depicted with a hand-picked selection of the British Museum in London.

Choosing just 100 out of 80,000 objects on display was no mean feat. But what is on public show amounts to just 1% of the institution’s eight million artefacts.
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March 24, 2010

Why Britain should give the Parthenon Marbles back to Greece

Posted at 9:48 pm in Elgin Marbles

The Spectator has unexpectedly spoken out in favour of the return of the Elgin Marbles from the British Museum to Greece. This is the second positive article in a year about the subject – from a source that historically has been against such action.

From:
Spectator

Thursday, 4th March 2010
Why we should give the Elgin Marbles back to Greece
Daniel Korski 10:45am

While we’re talking about countries on the brink, it’s worth taking a look at Greece – which has probably passed beyond it. The government has published its package of austerity measures – aiming to reduce its deficit to 8.7 percent of GDP by the end of 2010 – and the markets are deciding what they think. But, in the meantime, the country faces strikes; the Euro is taking a pummeling; there are fears that problems may spread to countries like Portugal and Spain; and Greek foreign policy – particularly with regard to Macedonia and the Balkans – is stalling. Nobody is through the woods yet.

All this mean that George Papandreou’s problems are also the EU’s problem. Sure, as one of Greece’s best known scholars Loukas Tsoukalis says, “there is no denying that the prime responsibility for dealing with the Greek problem lies with the Greeks themselves.” But answers to these problems will also have to come from Berlin, Paris and Frankfurt, home of the ECB. But London can play a role too.
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February 20, 2010

University College London’s museums ask the public what items to deacccession

Posted at 10:41 pm in Similar cases

In stark contrast to the rigid anti-deaccessioning policies of institutions such as the British Museum, University College London is asking the public to give their views on which of the items in their collection should be sold off to free up space for new artefacts.

From:
Time

London Museum Asks Public What to Pitch
By Gaëlle Faure / London
Saturday, Nov. 14, 2009

If you’re the type of person who has trouble throwing anything out, then the job of collections reviewer at the University College London’s museums might not be for you. The college is embarking upon a purge of its assorted collections, some 250,000 items in total, only 2% of which are currently on display. A gargantuan task, surely, but the college is not doing it on its own — officials have taken the unusual step of opening the process up to the public. They’re asking visitors what they should keep, what they should give away to other museums — one institution’s trash is another’s treasure — or, as a last resort, what they should just throw away.

“Disposal is still a dirty word. Most museum people are too scared to use it,” says Jayne Dunn, UCL’s collections manager. “We work for the public, but no one’s ever thought of asking them what they want.”
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February 18, 2010

Cyrus Cylinder row stems from the British Museum’s broken promises

Posted at 2:06 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

The current dispute over the Cyrus Cylinder stems largely from the fact that the loan of the artefact was promised by the museum, but has now been delayed so many times. The British Museum keeps trying to occupy some sort of moral high ground, despite the fact that they continue to drag their heels at every opportunity.

From:
The National (Abu Dhabi)

Political row over broken promises
Ed Lake
Last Updated: February 09. 2010 4:03PM UAE / February 9. 2010 12:03PM GMT

Given the steadily declining relations between the UK and Iran, with accusations of election-rigging and agent-provocateurism bouncing back and forth, it is remarkable that a collegial spirit has managed to endure between the Islamic republic and the British archaeological establishment for this long.

Still, whatever hopes there might have been for potsherd diplomacy would now seem to be dashed. Tehran has officially cut its ties with the British Museum. “We consider it a closed chapter,” Hassan Mohseni of Iran’s cultural heritage and tourism organisation told the press this week. Under the circumstances, it’s a suggestive figure of speech.
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February 11, 2010

A history of the world in one hundred disputed artefacts

Posted at 10:15 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

Those living in the UK can not fail to have noticed the BBC’s ongoing series – the history of the world in one hundred objects, organised by British Museum director Neil MacGregor. This series due to run for much off 2010, promises to perpetuate his personal world view of the Universal Museum, while sidestepping the true nature of the debates surrounding many of the artefacts in his institution. There is an issue at stake here of how vast a mouthpiece the BBC has given him to expound his own views, without others being given a clear, proportional right of reply.

From:
Modern Ghana

A HISTORY OF THE WORLD WITH 100 LOOTED OBJECTS OF OTHERS: GLOBAL INTOXICATION?
By Kwame Opoku, Dr.

It is perhaps indicative of the cultural climate of our times that the British Museum and the BBC could announce a programme with a pretentious title such as “A History of the World in 100 Objects”. (2) A pretence to serving the whole world, a title which indicates a wider view but hides in fact the reality of frantic efforts to preserve the interests of a few in the guise of the so-called “universal museums” which have come under some heavy criticisms in recent years. The project appears to be aimed at diverting attention from the fact that the tide of history is moving against the illegitimate detention of the cultural objects of others. It is aimed at impressing the masses about the alleged indispensable role of the major museums and gathering support for their continuing possession that is tainted with illegality and illegitimacy. In the process, public interest for the museum would be stimulated and information about the objects as considered necessary would be produced.

The last few years have seen major Western museums being criticised for purchasing looted objects. Leading American museums and universities have been forced to return to Italy looted artefacts that had been bought by the museums, knowing full well that the objects could only have been looted. Indeed, an American curator is in jail in Italy, waiting for her trial for criminal offences in connection with acquisition of Italian artefacts for her museum in the USA. Moreover, Egypt has renewed its demands for the return of the Rosetta Stone, the bust of Nefertiti and other items that have been in major Western museums for several decades. The Greeks have constantly been reclaiming the return of the Parthenon/Elgin Marbles and the completion of the magnificent New Acropolis Museum has exposed the hollow British arguments for retaining the marbles. The British public has overwhelmingly voted in favour of returning the Parthenon/Elgin Marbles to Athens whenever a poll was made. We should also remember that the Nigerians who have never forgotten the brutal invasion of Benin in 1897 are seeking the return of some of the 5000 objects looted by the British troops in their bloody aggression against a kingdom that resisted British imperialist expansion and hegemonial endeavours.
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February 10, 2010

Does the British Museum really need six more months to study the Cyrus Cylinder

Posted at 2:00 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

As the Cyrus Cylinder debate continues, the British Museum claims that it requires at least six months to study the newly found fragments. It is unclear though why it is necessary to do this now (and delay the already many times postponed loan), rather than wait until the cylinder is returned at the end of the loan period. Of course they could be assuming that others will have the same propensity to break promises as they do.

From:
Press TV (Iran)

London needs 6 months to study new cylinder pieces
Wed, 27 Jan 2010 17:27:00 GMT

The British Museum says it needs at least six more months to study the newly-found fragments of the ancient Cyrus cylinder.

The museum announced the discovery of new clay pieces in its storeroom, which seem to be copies of the Persian Cyrus cylinder, known as the world’s first charter of human rights.
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February 9, 2010

The Rosetta Stone will return to Egypt one day

Posted at 2:30 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

Dr. Zahi Hawass is confident that one day the Rosetta Stone will return to Egypt. It is not a question of if, but when.

From:
Asharq Alawsat

The Rosetta Stone Will Return
26/01/2010
By Dr. Zahi Hawass

Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat- With all its history and glory, Egypt owes [a great deal to] the black basalt slab called the Rosetta Stone that unravelled the mysteries of Pharoanic scripture engraved on temples, graves, obelisks and the pyramids. Before the stone was discovered, these writings were merely signs and symbols.

The story of the puzzling stone began when part of the French [military] expedition to Egypt arrived in the Mediterranean city of Rosetta, where the water of the River Nile meets the Mediterranean Sea. The soldiers admired the city and its fresh air, and were fascinated by its residents, their handicrafts, their small fishing boats and the beautiful houses. Engineers then made changes to the Citadel of Qaitbay in Rosetta before they surrounded it with red brick walls to act as a fort and protect the city’s entrance against a potential English invasion.
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February 7, 2010

British Museum battles with Iran over Cyrus Cylinder

Posted at 5:05 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

The British Museum’s arguments with Iran continue, as they try to justify their position in continually delaying the proposed reciprocal loan of the Cyrus Cylinder. What is more interesting is that the British Museum clings on to these artefacts proclaiming how important they are, but then it is not included on the list of the 100 most important artefacts in the Museum.

From:
The Guardian

British Museum in battle with Iran over ancient ‘charter of rights’
Tehran alleges time-wasting as curator trawls through thousands of cuneiform clay fragments for Cyrus the Great’s legacy
John Wilson – The Observer, Sunday 24 January 2010

The discovery of fragments of ancient cuneiform tablets – hidden in a British Museum storeroom since 1881 – has sparked a diplomatic row between the UK and Iran. In dispute is a proposed loan of the Cyrus cylinder, one of the most important objects in the museum’s collection, and regarded by some historians as the world’s first human rights charter.

The Iranian government has threatened to “sever all cultural relations” with Britain unless the artefact is sent to Tehran immediately. Museum director Neil MacGregor has been accused by an Iranian vice-president of “wasting time” and “making excuses” not to make the loan of the 2,500-year-old clay object, as was agreed last year.
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January 27, 2010

Iran plans to sever cultural links with UK over Cyrus Cylinder

Posted at 2:03 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

Iran’s renewed irritation with the UK over the successive delays to the proposed loan of the Cyrus Cylinder is showing no sign of abating, as they continue to press ahead with plans to cease cooperation on other cultural issues. It is worth noting again, that Iran in the past has cooperated extensively with the British Museum – not least in the loan of artefacts to them for their recent Shah Abbas exhibition.

From:
Daily Telegraph

Iran threatens to sever links with UK in row over Cyrus Cylinder
By Heidi Blake
Published: 4:15PM GMT 21 Jan 2010

Iran has threatened to cut cultural ties with the UK after the British Museum refused to hand over a 23cm clay cylinder inscribed by Cyrus the Great, the Persian king.

The museum had promised to lend Iran the cylinder, thought to be inscribed with the first declaration of human rights, after borrowing several key works form Iranian museums for its exhibition on Shah Abbas, the Iranian emperor, last year.
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January 19, 2010

British Museum: “The removal of any material from an archaeological site is damaging”

Posted at 9:51 pm in British Museum, Uncategorized

A new exhibit at the Tate Modern is based on the artist’s experiences with a fragment broken off one of the Pyramids in Egypt that he later returned. What is more interesting though is the comments from the British Museum on the issues raised by this – despite the fact that many of the artefacts in their collection were originally acquired in similar circumstances by untrained excavators without proper permits.

From:
Daily Telegraph

Tate show reveals artist’s pyramid theft
British artist Andy Holden is to reveal how he stole a piece of the Egypt pyramids in a new exhibition at the Tate Britain in London.
Roya Nikkhah, Arts Correspondent
Published: 9:00AM GMT 10 Jan 2010

The artist’s guilty secret began with a seemingly innocent trip to Egypt.

Accompanying his father, who was there on business, Andy, then 12, was taken to the Great Pyramid of Giza: the only one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still surviving – relatively intact – and the oldest and largest of the pyramids at the Giza Necropolis.

“When we arrived at the pyramids, unthinkingly I broke off a lump of stone from the side of the Great Pyramid in Giza,” said Mr Holden. “I got home and put it on a shelf in my room alongside a collection of other souvenirs I had as a kid, but when my parents found out, they were furious and it ended up becoming this terrible guilt object.
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December 3, 2009

Losing Marbles – a play by East 15 Acting School

Posted at 2:02 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Events

East 15 Acting School are performing a play about the Elgin Marbles in London next week.

The play is on Tuesday 8 December & Wednesday 9 December 2009 at 20:00 in the Drill Hall, 16 Chenies Street, London WC1E 7EX. This is conveniently located in central London, only a few minutes walk from the British Museum. Tickets can be booked at the website address below.

From:
the Drill Hall

Losing Marbles
East 15 Acting School Showcase

Losing Marbles is an epic cinemascope blockbuster Christmas show made with the help of sticky back plastic, cardboard tubes and spaghetti.

A high speed chase across the new Europe to discover who owns the past.
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October 14, 2009

Stolen artefacts returned to Kabul

Posted at 1:14 pm in Similar cases

Artefacts stolen from Afghanistan and recovered by British customs in 2004 have now gone on display in Kabul after being returned earlier this year.

From:
The Age (Melbourne)

Stolen artefacts return to Kabul
JON BOONE, KABUL
October 8, 2009

It was a moment that went a long way to putting Afghanistan and its cultural heritage back on the map. In a small space in a once bombed-out building on the southern edge of Kabul, Afghan dignitaries and western diplomats squeezed past each other to see into the display cases: bronze age digging implements, pieces of carved marble and elaborate metal goods spanning Afghanistan’s rich history.

It was only a two-room exhibit and much of the rest of Afghanistan’s National Museum remained empty. But the opening of the room marked a first step towards the restoration of a museum which, before the destruction wreaked during the country’s civil war, once boasted one of the greatest collections of ancient artefacts anywhere in the world.
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