Thursday, September 12, 2013
William D. Cohan ('The Restitution Struggle: Malaise, Indifference, and Frustration', Art News, 11th September 2013), discusses recent developments concerning the return of art confiscated during the Holocaust to the heirs of those who were forced to relinquish it. Decades after the effort began, hundreds of thousands of artworks and other objects looted from victims of the Holocaust have yet to be returned to the owners or their heirs
“There is an enormous amount of work yet to be done,” concludes Webber, and other experts agree. “It’s 80 years after Hitler came to power and this still has not been dealt with. I think that’s a sign of the problem. I think it shows how much it means to people,” Webber says. And “it’s an indication of how much resistance there still is to providing justice after all these years.”
Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Maria Korologou, 'Louvre Exhibits Antiquities Stolen From Ligortina', Greekreporter.com September 10, 2013
They were stolen from Ligortina and today are exhibited at the world famous Louvre Museum. We are talking about the dozens of antiquities stolen in 1896 from Ligotirna and are now exhibited at the French museum and particularly in the Greek, Etruscan, and Roman collection wing. These findings belong to ditches that coincidentally were discovered in the region of Ligortinos, in the Messara Plain, Crete. They were crafted while Crete was under Mycenaean rule and were stolen from Greece. The issue has taken on bigger dimensions after the mobilization of the local cultural association with their intervening with the ministers of Culture and Sports and of Foreign Affairs. A New Democracy deputy from Heraklion requires answers to whether there is an explicit record of the objects stolen from Ligotirna, how many and what findings are exhibited at The Louvre, while Lefteris Augenakis asked for the antiquities to be returned from wherever they are displayed.
In 1896 Crete was under (failing it is true) Ottoman rule, but is that in itself grounds for the use of the verb "stolen"? But yes, by all means let a full inventory be made and published, together with documenting how they left Crete. Then, and not before, their fate can be discussed. Who's going to pay for it?