This book examines contemporary approaches to restitution from the perspective of museums. It focuses on the ways in which these institutions have been addressing the subject at a regional, national and international level. In particular, it explores contemporary practices and recent claims, and investigates to what extent the question of restitution as an issue of ownership is still at large, or whether museums have found additional ways to conceptualise and practice restitution, by thinking beyond the issue of ownership. The challenges, benefits and drawbacks of recent and current museum practice are explored. At the same time, the book discusses how these museum practices are received , and informed, by source communities, institutional and governmental agendas and visitors' expectations in order to explore issues of authority, collaboration and shared or conflicting values between the different communities involved in the process. This important book will contribute to the developing body of literature that academics, professionals, policy makers and students can refer to in order to understand how restitution has been negotiated, 'materialised', practiced and evaluated within museums.
A Commentary to International Conventions and European Union Law
Author: Irini A. Stamatoudi
Publisher: Edward Elgar Publishing
Category: Political Science
This invaluable book, for the first time, brings together the international and European Union legal framework on cultural property law and the restitution of cultural property. Drawing on the author's extensive experience of international disputes, it provides a very comprehensive and useful commentary. Theories of cultural nationalism and cultural internationalism and their founding principles are explored. Irini Stamatoudi also draws on soft law sources, ethics, morality, public feeling and the role of international organisations to create a complete picture of the principles and trends emerging today.
While the question of the return of cultural objects is by no means a new one, it has become the subject of increasingly intense debate in recent years. This important book explores the removal and the return of cultural objects from occupied communities during the last two centuries and analyses the concurrent evolution of international cultural heritage law. The book focuses on the significant influence exerted by British, U.S. and Australian governments and museums on international law and museum policy in response to restitution claims. It shows that these claims, far from heralding the long-feared dissolution of museums and their collections, provide museums with a vital, new role in the process of self-determination and cultural identity. Compelling and thought-provoking throughout, this book is essential reading for archaeologists, international lawyers and all those involved in cultural resource management.
Written over a thirty-five year career, the essays in Civilizing the Museum introduce students to the powerful, sometimes contested, and often unrealized notion that museums should welcome all because they house the collective memory of all. Drawing on her experience working in and with museums in the US and throughout the world, Author Elaine Heumann Gurian explores the possibilities for making museums more central and relevant to society. The twenty-two essays are organized around five main themes: * museum definitions * civic responsibility and social service * architectural spaces * exhibitions * spirituality and rationality. And these themes address the elements that would make museums more inclusive such as: * exhibition technique * space configurations * the personality of the director * the role of social service * power sharing * types of museums * the need for emotion humour and spirituality. Without abandoning the traditional museum processes, Gurian shows how museums can honour tradition whilst embracing the new. Enriched by her experience in groundbreaking museums, Gurian has provided a book that provokes thought, dialogue and action for students and professionals in the field to realize the inclusive potential of museums.
The author takes a sweeping look at the idea of restitution and its impact on the concept of human rights and the practice of politics. She confronts the difficulties of determining victims and assigning blame.
India by Design: Colonial History and Cultural Display maps for the first time a series of historical events—from the Raj in the mid-nineteenth century up to the present day—through which India was made fashionable to Western audiences within the popular cultural arenas of the imperial metropole. Situated at the convergence of discussions in anthropology, art history, museum studies, and postcolonial criticism, this dynamic study investigates with vivid historical detail how Indian objects, bodies, images, and narratives circulated through metropolitan space and acquired meaning in an emergent nineteenth-century consumer economy. Through an examination of India as represented in department stores, museums, exhibitions, painting, and picture postcards of the era, the book carefully confronts the problems and politics of postcolonial display and offers an original and provocative account of the implications of colonial practices for visual production in our contemporary world.
The robbery and restitution of Jewish property are two inextricably linked social processes. It is not possible to understand the lawsuits and international agreements on the restoration of Jewish property of the late 1990s without examining what was robbed and by whom. In this volume distinguished historians first outline the mechanisms and scope of the European-wide program of plunder and then assess the effectiveness and historical implications of post-war restitution efforts. Everywhere the solution of legal and material problems was intertwined with changing national myths about the war and conflicting interpretations of justice. Even those countries that pursued extensive restitution programs using rigorous legal means were unable to compensate or fully comprehend the scale of Jewish loss. Especially in Eastern Europe, it was not until the collapse of communism that the concept of restoring some Jewish property rights even became a viable option. Integrating the abundance of new research on the material effects of the Holocaust and its aftermath, this comparative perspective examines the developments in Germany, Poland, Italy, France, Belgium, Hungary and the Czech Republic.
In the past, museums often changed the meaning of icons or statues of deities from sacred to aesthetic, or used them to declare the superiority of Western society, or simply as cultural and historical evidence. The last generation has seen faith groups demanding to control 'their' objects, and curators recognising that objects can only be understood within their original religious context. In recent years there has been an explosion of interest in the role religion plays in museums, with major exhibitions highlighting the religious as well as the historical nature of objects. Using examples from all over the world, Religious Objects in Museums is the first book to examine how religious objects are transformed when they enter the museum, and how they affect curators and visitors. It examines the full range of meanings that religious objects may bear - as scientific specimen, sacred icon, work of art, or historical record. Showing how objects may be used to argue a point, tell a story or promote a cause, may be worshipped, ignored, or seen as dangerous or unlucky, this highly accessible book is an essential introduction to the subject.
The Ethics of Collecting Cultural Property explores the ethical, legal, and intellectual issues related to excavating, selling, collecting, and owning cultural artifacts. Twenty-two contributors, representing archaeology, law, museum administration, art history, and philosophy, suggest how the numerous interested parties, often at odds, can cooperate to resolve cultural heritage, ownership, and repatriation issues, and improve the protection of cultural property worldwide.
Art museums, cases of beauty and calm in a fast-paced world, have emerged in recent decades as the most vibrant and popular of all cultural institutions. But as they have become more popular, their direction and values have been contested as never before. This engaging thematic history of the art museum from its inception in the eighteenth century to the present offers an essential framework for understanding contemporary debates as they have evolved in Europe and the United States.
Responses to controversial exhibitions in recent years have demonstrated the dissatisfaction felt by many indigenous peoples and ethnic groups at the ways in which the western museum traditionally represented their cultures and excluded them from the process of interpretation and display. Native Americans, Aboriginal Australians, and other indigenous peoples are now demanding that human remains, sacred objects and other items of cultural property be removed from display and repatriated. Drawing upon the experiences of museum staff and communities across the globe, 'Making Representations' examines the development of new forms of museological practice. The author also examines the growth of museums, cultural centres and Aboriginal Keeping Places being established by indigenous and immigrant communities as they take control of the interpretive process and challenge the traditional role of the museum.
Hailed when it was first published in 1985 as the bible of U.S. collections management, A Legal Primer on Managing Museum Collections offers the only comprehensive discussion of the legal questions faced by museums regarding collections. This revised and expanded third edition addresses the many legal developments—including a comprehensive discussion of stolen art and the international movement of cultural property, recent developments in copyright, and the effects of burgeoning electronic uses—that have occurred during the past twenty-five years. An authorative, go-to book for any museum professional, Legal Primer offers detailed explanations of the law, suggestions for preventing legal problems, and numerous case studies of lawsuits involving museum collections.
John Henry Merryman,Albert Edward Elsen,Stephen K. Urice
Author: John Henry Merryman,Albert Edward Elsen,Stephen K. Urice
Publisher: Kluwer Law International B.V.
This book describes the collisions between the art world and the law, with a critical eye through a combination of primary source materials, excerpts from professional and art journals, and extensive textual notes. Topics analysed include + the fate of works of art in wartime, + the international trade in stolen and illegally exported cultural property, + artistic freedom, + censorship and state support for art and artists, + copyright, + droit moral and droit de suite, + the artist's professional life and death, + collectors in the art market, + income and estate taxation, + charitable donations and works of art, and + art museums and their collections. The authors are recognised experts in the field who have defined the canon in many aspects of art law.
Der größte Teil der aus vielen Ländern Europas stammenden nationalsozialistischen Raubkunst befand sich bei Kriegsende 1945 in Depots in der amerikanischen Besatzungszone. Die Sicherstellung und Rückführung dieser Kunstwerke sowie ausgelagerter deutscher Museumsbestände lag in Händen der 'Monuments, Fine Arts & Archives Section' der amerikanischen Militärregierung. Das reich bebilderte Buch behandelt die Geschichte der größten amerikanischen Kunstsammelstelle, des in den ehemaligen NSDAP-Gebäuden am Königsplatz in München eingerichteten Central Collecting Point. Ausländische Raubkunst wurde hauptsächlich von hier aus restituiert. Im Mittelpunkt stehen Standort, Einrichtung, Mitarbeiter und Arbeit der Institution in den Jahren 1945 bis 1949. Einzelne Restitutionsvorgänge werden exemplarisch untersucht. Die Geschichte des aus dem Collecting Point hervorgegangenen Zentralinstituts für Kunstgeschichte und die Ausstellungspolitik des Amerika-Hauses werden im Rahmen der 'Re-Education' und des Wiederaufbaus der Münchner und westdeutschen Kunst- und Kulturszene nach 1945 beleuchtet.
Pacific Collections in Australian Museums, Art Galleries and Archives
Author: Susan Cochrane,Max Quanchi
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
This volume investigates Pacific collections held in Australian museums, art galleries and archives, and the diverse group of 19th and 20th century collectors responsible for their acquisition. The nineteen essays reveal varied personal and institutional motivations that eventually led to the conservation, preservation and exhibition in Australia of a remarkable archive of Pacific Island material objects, art and crafts, photographs and documents. Hunting the Collectors benchmarks the importance of Pacific Collections in Australia and is a timely contribution to the worldwide renaissance of interest in Oceanic arts and cultures. The essays suggest that the custodial role is not fixed and immutable but fluctuates with the perceived importance of the collection, which in turn fluctuates with the level of national interest in the Pacific neighbourhood. This cyclical rise and fall of Australian interest in the Pacific Islands means many of the valuable early collections in state and later national repositories and institutions have been rarely exhibited or published. But, as the authors note, enthusiastic museum anthropologists, curators, collection managers and university-based scholars across Australia, and worldwide, have persisted with research on material collected in the Pacific. This volume is a very important one for anyone studying the art and material culture of the Pacific. It focuses on collections now in Australia. Even those well versed in museum collections from the Pacific will learn about many important but little-known collectors as well as better-known figures like the anthropologists F. E. Williams and Thomas Farrell, the husband of Queen Emma. This will be a treat for students and specialist alike. —Professor Robert L. Welsch, University of Dartmouth
The trafficking of artefacts and the quest for restitution
Author: Brigitta Hauser-Schäublin,Lyndel V. Prott
Category: Social Science
Against the backdrop of international conventions and their implementation, Cultural Property and Contested Ownership explores how highly-valued cultural goods are traded and negotiated among diverging parties and their interests. Cultural artefacts, such as those kept and trafficked between art dealers, private collectors and museums, have become increasingly localized in a ‘Bermuda triangle’ of colonialism, looting and the black market, with their re-emergence resulting in disputes of ownership and claims for return. This interdisciplinary volume provides the first book-length investigation of the changing behaviours resulting from the effect of the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property. The collection considers the impact of the Convention on the way antiquity dealers, museums and auction houses, as well as nation states and local communities, address issues of provenance, contested ownership, and the trafficking of cultural property. The book contains a range of contributions from anthropologists, lawyers, historians and archaeologists. Individual cases are examined from a bottom-up perspective and assessed from the viewpoint of international law in the Epilogue. Each section is contextualised by an introductory chapter from the editors.