Showing results 397 - 408 of 543 for the tag: Restitution.

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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October 8, 2009

Greece is now prepared for the return of the Elgin Marbles

Posted at 1:04 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, New Acropolis Museum

For many years, one of the excuses for the British Museum’s retention of the Parthenon Sculptures was that there was no suitable place in Greece to put them. This has now been solved by the completed Acropolis Museum which continues to receive overwhelmingly positive reviews.

From:
National Post

Saturday, October 3, 2009
Ready For The Return
The impressive new Acropolis Museum makes the case that Greece is all set for the Elgin Marbles
Ian McKellar, National Post

Let’s say you consider yourself something of a budding ruinologist. Perhaps you’ve visited some ancient Roman sites on a trip to Provence, maybe you’ve seen the pyramids or perchance you’ve even made it to Chichen Itza in the Mayan Riviera.

For such a cultured person as yourself, Greece presents a most appealing, if troubling, opportunity. The nation is the cradle of Western civilization, and Athens is chockablock with museums and historical sites — but always there are the whispers of bad traffic, of poor air quality, of stifling heat during the summer months.
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September 17, 2009

Safeguarding the ancient treasures of the world.

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

Following on from their collection of films on the Elgin Marbles, World Focus have interviewed Cindy Ho from SAFE about efforts being made around the world today to combat looting and smuggling of cultural property.

From:
World Focus

September 16, 2009
Q&A: Safeguarding the world’s ancient treasures

This week, Worldfocus aired a report by special correspondent Lynn Sherr and producer Megan Thompson exploring the new Acropolis museum in Athens and the controversy over the appropriate home for the many Parthenon sculptures currently housed in the British Museum in London.

The marble artworks were acquired by British ambassador Lord Elgin in 1816 for 35,000 pounds. Many Greeks think that the pieces, which came to be known as the Elgin marbles in Britain, should be returned to Athens.
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September 1, 2009

When permanent loans are possible after all

Posted at 12:52 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

For some time, Greece has suggested that the return of the Elgin Marbles could be made more easily possible by a long term / semi-permanent loan. On a regular basis though it is suggested that this does not resemble what is normally described as a loan – therefore it is unworkable & merely restitution via the back door. Some silver platters have just been returned to Switzerland – not something directly relevant to this case. What is interesting though is that although they were owned by St George Church at Hanover Square in London, they were held by the British Museum on permanent loan. So, whulst they might claim that the concept of a permanent loan is oxymoronic & refuse to enter into serious discussions, it appears that when the situation occurs in reverse thewy are perfectly happy with accepting such an unworkable proposition.

From:
Swissinfo

August 26, 2009 – 3:21 PM
History returns on a silver platter

Four silver plates nearly five centuries old have been repatriated from Britain to Switzerland.

The pieces, created by Swiss Renaissance painter Urs Graf in 1519, were purchased by the Basel History Museum and the Swiss National Museum from the British Museum for £400,000 (SFr694,000).
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August 26, 2009

Culture wars over the Parthenon Sculptures

Posted at 12:55 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Similar cases

Whilst the British Museum insists that the New Acropolis Museum changes nothing in the battle for the battle for the return of the Elgin Marbles, most commentators tend to disagree. It is not the only museum built to potentially returned artefacts either, as the Egyptians are also building a new Grand Museum of Egypt with the hope that this will act as a catalyst for restitution claims.

From:
Foreign Policy (USA)

Is Greece Losing its Elgin Marbles?
The battle between antiquities-loving and antiquities-producing countries continues.
BY SUSAN EMERLING | AUGUST 21, 2009

The culture war between antiquities-importing countries and those whose soils harbor archaeological treasures has flared up again. This time, the battle isn’t over recently looted artifacts returned by a chastened American museum to their country of origin. Instead, it is over the June opening of Athens’ New Acropolis Museum (NAM), which, in addition to housing an eye-boggling cache of art and artifacts found on the Acropolis, was built with the wishful premise of someday housing what the British refer to as the “Elgin Marbles.” These are the late fifth-century sculptures that were removed from the Parthenon in the early 19th-century by Thomas Bruce, the 7th Earl of Elgin, and acquired by the British Museum in 1816.

Although there are certainly entrenched political and legal obstacles to the return of the Elgin Marbles to Greece — chief among them, the British Museum’s claim of rightful ownership — the elegant, state-of-the-art concrete and glass-walled NAM, designed by Swiss-born New York-based architect Bernard Tschumi has put to bed long-standing concerns over Greece’s ability to safeguard and exhibit the stones, should they ever return to its shores. Despite its persistent refusal to consider the restitution, even the British Museum seems to have tacitly acknowledged the suitability of the NAM by offering the marginally sincere three-month loan of the marbles in exchange for a renunciation of Greece’s ownership claims. (The Greeks ridiculed and rejected the offer.) But amid all this posturing, does the construction of the NAM signal the beginning of a shift in the repatriation debate, which might affect museums around the world that are caught in similar conflicts over contested objects? Although not all archaeological source countries have the resources to build such an unimpeachable museum, the issue of restitution for works of art might increasingly be decided less on whether these source countries can legally reclaim their own antiquities — but whether, ethically, they should.
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August 21, 2009

Who owns the bones of Saint Canute?

Posted at 1:10 pm in Similar cases

Within Denmark, there is debate over who owns the bones of Saint Canute, although the discussion does not necessarily seem to extend to the actual location in which the remains are held in the way that pervades most restitution cases.

One should not forget that whilst Denmark has been very forward thinking about restitution cases with Greenland, Copenhagen’s National Museum continues to hold onto fragments from the Parthenon Sculptures.

From:
Copenhagen Post

Who owns Canute’s bones?
Tuesday, 18 August 2009 11:33 News
Submitted by Baron Joost Dahlerup

Not long ago, Greece requested that the British Museum return artefacts to the Acropolis. Likewise, Iceland has requested the Icelandic Sagas be returned. It is becoming more common to ask for original works of art and cultural artefacts to be returned to their countries of origin, so they can be viewed and admired where they belong.

The question, ‘Who owns St Canute’s earthly remains?’ has previously been brought up here in Denmark. Is it the Bishop of Odense or the Church Ministry? Is it the National Museum, or are they a personal possession of the royal family? Who has the final say – the Church Ministry, the Culture Ministry, the National Museum, or the Queen?
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The reasons given for non return of cultural property

Posted at 1:00 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

This is the second part of Kwame Opoku’s article on the reasons given by museums against restitution as a way of avoiding confronting the real issues.

From:
Modern Ghana

WOULD WESTERN MUSEUMS RETURN LOOTED OBJECTS IF NIGERIA AND OTHER AFRICAN STATES WERE RULED BY ANGELS? RESTITUTION AND CORRUPTION*
By Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | 12 hours ago

[…]

IV. What is to be done?
In view of the very clear position of the major Western museums not to return any of the looted/stolen African artefacts, what should be done? Below are few proposals in this regard.

1. Urgent examination of existing cooperation agreements and arrangements between African museums and Western museums.
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Would Westerm Museums return artefacts if they could?

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

Many of the museums of the West, when faced with restitution claims, have insisted that they would consider returning the artefacts – but they are unable to do so. Common reasons given include the security of the artefacts if they were returned, the lack of a suitable place to house them, or statutes that forbid deaccessioning. Are these institutions really speaking the truth though, ore merely trying to throw up more barriers to prevent any sort of serious discussion of the real issues involved.

Due to the length of this piece I am reproducing it here in two parts.

From:
Modern Ghana

WOULD WESTERN MUSEUMS RETURN LOOTED OBJECTS IF NIGERIA AND OTHER AFRICAN STATES WERE RULED BY ANGELS? RESTITUTION AND CORRUPTION*
By Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | 12 hours ago

Corruption, like tango, requires two partners.

A seminal study by Peju Layiwola, dealt with the question of the cultural memory of a people whose development has been brutally interrupted and their cultural objects seized by a foreign invader. (1) In the specific case of Benin, the British seized more than 3000 artefacts during their nefarious invasion in 1879. (2) This date and the invasion have remained memorable for the people of Benin, Nigeria and the continent of Africa.

Peju Layiwola whose mother, Princess Elisabeth Olowu, is a well-known artist, was born in the Palace of the Oba in Benin City during the reign of Oba Akenzua II, her maternal grandfather. Peju spent her childhood in Benin City, went to school there and did her first degree at the University of Benin. Her doctoral dissertation at the University of Ibadan dealt with contemporary Benin brass casting. Peju is therefore from family affiliation, from childhood experience and education linked to Benin and inevitably, since she was drawn to art in her infancy, to the arts of Benin and the tragic loss of the Benin bronzes through the British invasion. The important question then is not why Peju is concerned by the continued loss of the Benin Bronzes but rather why some people are less concerned or even indifferent to attempts to recover looted or stolen artefacts.
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August 17, 2009

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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