Showing results 61 - 72 of 80 for the tag: Neil MacGregor.

September 28, 2008

Nationalism & looted cultural property

Posted at 9:58 am in British Museum, Similar cases

Some such as James Cuno, see reunification requests for looted artefacts as cultural nationalism. It is always implied that this is an inherently bad thing, although the issue is never fully discussed. If a country lost part of its national identity, surely it should be allowed to rebuild it, rather than only being defined by what was left behind by the museums & institutions of the west?

From:
Modern Ghana

IS NATIONALISM AS SUCH A DANGEROUS PHENOMENON FOR CULTURE AND STOLEN/LOOTED CULTURAL PROPERTY?
By Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | Sun, 28 Sep 2008

“The charge of nationalism (whether outdated or au courant) is frequently levelled at those seeking the repatriation of cultural treasures to those nations and communities from which they were extracted. But nations have always used their own material culture as a means of constructing and expressing their national identity. There is nothing implicitly damaging or divisive in that. However it becomes so when the objects being used are not indigenous to that country but instead material extracted from other nations during periods of imperial conquest or colonial adventure.” Tom Flynn (1)
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September 25, 2008

Lewis Chessmen to be discussed

Posted at 9:37 am in British Museum, Similar cases

After a lot of coverage at the start of the year, it appears that efforts to secure the return of the Lewis Chessmen to Scotland are still underway, with the Scottish Culture Minister due to meet Neil MacGregor to discuss the issue.

From:
Stornoway Gazette

Chessmen could celebrate ‘Homecoming’ on Lewis
25 September 2008
By Michelle Robson

THE LEWIS Chessmen could be coming home next year as part of Scotland’s national celebrations.
2009 is the Year of the Homecoming and Scottish Ministers are hoping the British Museum will agree to return the historical items to their finding place.

Culture Minister Linda Fabiani said this week that she was due to meet the Director of the British Museum on October 6 to discuss the issue further.
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August 23, 2008

Lectures on the Encyclopaedic Museum

Posted at 2:05 pm in British Museum, Events, Similar cases

James Cuno, Neil MacGregor, Phillipe De Montebello & Thomas Gaehtgens represent the astonishingly one sided collection of speakers lecturing in Chicago on the concept formerly known as the Universal Museum. (details of each lecture follow the main article).

From:
Chicago Art Institute

NEWS: The Art Institute of Chicago Presents: 360 Degrees: Art beyond Borders
22 Aug 2008

The Art Institute of Chicago
Chicago, Illinois

27 September 2008–16 June 2009

[…]

Join us for a wealth of insightful and exciting 360 Degrees programming.

# Lectures: Four engaging lecture series occur throughout the season. In “The Fate of Encyclopedic Museums,” directors from the Art Institute, the Getty, the British Museum, and the Met discuss the role of the encyclopedic museum. Noted scholars also explore current and historical perspectives on globalization and Art Institute curators give their take on the encyclopedic nature of their collections.
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July 3, 2008

Was MacGregor ever really offered the Met Job?

Posted at 12:41 pm in British Museum

Lee Rosenbaum offers some thoughts on whether the idea that Neil MacGregor was offered the job of director of the Met was all down to distortion of the issue by headline writers.

Read her piece here.

At the same time Norman Lebrecht uses this news as another chance to extol the virtues of MacGregor & the British Museum in a tone that seems almost too adulatory to be believable. If only the residents of all the countries hoping for artefacts to be returned were as excited by this news.

Read his piece on the news here.

July 2, 2008

MacGregor will be staying at British Museum for another four years

Posted at 1:39 pm in British Museum

When Philippe de Montebello announced his retirement from New York’s Metropolitan Museum, British Museum director Neil MacGregor was one of the people tipped to replace him. The British Museum has just announced though that although he was offered the post, he has turned it down with the intention of staying with the British Museum until 2012.

During the next four years though, whilst MacGregor may continue trying to resist change, he may find that he is left with little choice, with the carpet being swept out from under him by changing views on restitution in the Museums’ world.

From:
Daily Telegraph

British Museum director says no to Metropolitan Museum of Art move
By Anita Singh, Showbusiness Editor
Last Updated: 6:42PM BST 01/07/2008
British Museum director Neil MacGregor has turned down a job as head of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Mr MacGregor was approached as a possible replacement for Philippe de Montebello, who is stepping down as Met director at the end of this year.

But after weighing up the offer, he has pledged his future to the British Museum for another five year term.
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April 2, 2008

A selective sort of context

Posted at 8:27 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles

Yet again, in discussions about the Parthenon Marbles (amongst other things), Neil MacGregor reverts back to his favourite Universal Museum argument. There is nothing inherently wrong with the Universal Museum idea – but at the same time, it is only one premise (out of many) that a museum could be based on. Just because the British Museum happens to fit within this (largely self created) category, it does not mean it is the only option, nor does it mean that it is the right option. Many archaeologist would convincingly argue, that seeing site specific historic artefacts within the context they were created for is far more important than seeing them within the context of other tenuously related artefacts from different times & cultures.

From:
Time Out (London)

Neil MacGregor: interview
By Ossian Ward. Photography Gautier Deblonde
Posted: Tue Apr 1 2008

You may think you‘re in London when you visit the British Museum but according to its acclaimed director Neil MacGregor you are actually walking the corridors and galleries of a global institution. As the record-breaking ’First Emperor‘ exhibition comes to an end, MacGregor tells Time Out why he‘s excited about the future
Neil MacGregor: interview

Neil MacGregor loves talking about the world, because most of it is on display at the British Museum, where he’s been director since 2002. ‘The museum was set up in 1753 to be a comparative world collection. One that should be usable by the world and free to people of all nations.’ I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone repeat one word so often in the space of an hour. ‘In order to make citizens equipped for the world, they’ve got to study the world. There was no equivalent of Oxford or Cambridge in London at that point, so in a way this became the Open University. In fact, it’s like the World Service, helping to build global citizenship and community.’
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November 27, 2003

Do museum directors really change the world?

Posted at 8:18 am in British Museum

With his much espoused ideas about the Universal Museum & talk about how it represents all of humanity, it is clear that museum directors have a lot of power in shaping our view of history – and in some cases re-writing history to serve their own points of view.

From:
Guardian

Behind the scenes at the museum
Forget marches and party politics. If you really want to change the world, become a museum director
Charlotte Higgins
Thursday November 27, 2003

What is the purpose of the British Museum? Or, for that matter, any of the “universal” museums built in the wake of the Enlightenment – those living encyclopedias that once, many moons ago, could claim to contain the whole of human knowledge?

It’s hard to know, even when you get the museums’ own directors to tell you, as happened at a conference at the British Museum last week. Despite these great institutions’ apparent commonality of purpose, you’ll get a different answer depending on whom you ask.
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August 11, 2003

British Museum denies that there are any ongoing “secret talks” abot the Elgin Marbles

Posted at 9:08 am in British Museum, Elgin Marbles

Despite reports that there are secret talks between Britain & Greece about the reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures, the British Museum has strongly denied that this is the case.

From:
Art Daily

Monday, August 4, 2003
Marbles will not be returned

The British Museum yesterday categorically rejected a claim that it was to give back the Parthenon marbles for next year´s Olympic Games in Athens. Nor were secret talks going on about their long-term loan to a £30m museum being built on the Acropolis, its trustees insisted.

Last year the Greek government dropped its claim to own the 2,500-year-old sculptures – taken from the Parthenon frieze by Lord Elgin in 1801 – in the hope that the British Museum might one day be persuaded to give them back.
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June 7, 2003

British Museum celebrates 250th anniversary

Posted at 1:10 pm in British Museum

The British Museum is 250 years old. In the time since it opened, a lot has changed – the means of acquiring artefacts, which were once acceptable, are no longer seen in the same light.

Perhaps now, in celebration of this anniversary, the time is right for the British Museum to re-invent itself, but repatriating the disputed artefacts in its collection, by negotiating new deals & exchanges, by looking forward rather than backward.

From:
Guardian

National treasure
In praise of the British Museum
Leader
Saturday June 7, 2003
The Guardian

This nation has too few monuments to the mind. Quite the grandest can be found in the capital – the British Museum, which is 250 years old today. A project of the 18th-century English enlightenment, it offered an education to the masses at a time when the country’s monarch, and much of its ruling classes, were indifferent to the public’s need for scholarly nourishment. It took an act of parliament to set up, was paid for by a public lottery and was founded in Bloomsbury in 1753 where it still stands. The first national public museum in the world opened for “all studious and curious persons” two years later. Dickens, Marx and Orwell all passed through its neo-classical portals in the pursuit of knowledge.

The British Museum made its name by collecting and cataloguing the world. It has sensibly abjured the trend for many public places to be an arm of the entertainment industry. This can be deeply unfashionable, but there is a place for it – highlighted by the need to repair Iraq’s cultural heritage, a task which the British Museum’s curators and conservators are uniquely equipped to help. Of course one person’s accumulated wealth can be viewed as another’s loss. Plunder may have brought the Elgin Marbles to Britain, but it is undeniable that they remain free for anyone to see. These arguments should be put to one side today. The British Museum’s repository of knowledge instead should be celebrated.
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March 21, 2003

Neil MacGregor answers questions about the Parthenon Marbles

Posted at 8:18 am in British Museum, Elgin Marbles

British Museum director, Neil MacGregor, is interviewed about the Parthenon Marbles. Unfortunately, his views on the subject are no more forward looking than those of his predecessor.

From:
Art & Antiques

Culture Clash

LONDON — The Elgin Marbles, an ensemble of friezes and sculptures taken from the Parthenon by a British nobleman, have been displayed in the British Museum since 1816. Museum Director Neil MacGregor took office in August and now stands at the center of the world’s most enduring conflict over cultural heritage. In a Q&A with Art & Antiques, MacGregor talks about Greece’s demands that the marbles be returned in time for the 2004 Olympics. He also touches on the venerable institution’s fiscal crisis.

A&A
About 40 percent of the Elgin Marbles are in Athens, 50 percent are here, and the rest are scattered around museums all over Europe. You’re an art historian. Wouldn’t it be nice to have them all in one place? Don’t the Greeks have a point on that?

NM
Of course they have a point, but half the marbles are lost forever. We’re talking about the proportions of what remains. They can’t get them up onto the Parthenon because it’s a ruin, so the argument that one normally makes for gathering things together from the same ensemble, that you are restoring or recovering the work of art, doesn’t apply here. One’s got to recognize that their life as part of the Parthenon is over. It seems to me rather a fortunate accident of history that about half of what survived is in London.
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March 1, 2003

Why Neil MacGregor thinks the Parthenon Marbles will never return to Greece

Posted at 8:02 am in British Museum, Elgin Marbles

More coverage of Neil MacGregor’s statement that the Parthenon Marbles will never return to Athens.

From:
Kathimerini (English Edition)

Monday February 24, 2003
Museum severs Marbles talks

LONDON (AP) – The British Museum’s Elgin Collection of sculptures from the Parthenon should never be returned to their original home in Greece, the museum’s director was quoted as saying yesterday.

“I do not believe there is a case for returning the marbles,” Museum Director Neil MacGregor said, according to the Sunday Telegraph newspaper. “They have a purpose here because this is where they can do most good… The British Museum can situate the achievements of these Greek sculptures in the context of the wider ancient world.”
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February 26, 2003

British Museum won’t return any looted cultural relics

Posted at 8:18 am in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

The British Museum’s statements regarding the Elgin Marbles could well have an impact on many other items in their collection that people want returned.

From:
Straits Times

British Museum won’t return any of its stolen cultural relics
The Dunhuang Cave relics will stay at the British Museum following its refusal to return Greece’s Elgin Marbles, say officials
By Alfred Lee

LONDON – The British Museum is unlikely to return China’s Dunhuang Cave treasures and other stolen cultural relics following its statement yesterday that it has decided to not give back Greece’s famous Elgin Marbles.

The Marbles were looted from the Parthenon in Athens in the early 1800s by Lord Elgin, the British Ambassador to Greece.
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