Category Archives: Museums

Accessory charges brought against former Louvre Director

Posted on: June 10, 2022 by Alexander Herman

“I’m confident in saying there will be more seizures and more prosecutions arising out of this investigation…” Those were the words of Assistant District Attorney Matthew Bogdanos, speaking to Ben Lewis last year on the Art Bust podcast. He was referring to an antiquities trafficking ring he’d uncovered that had been dealing in artefacts smuggled […]

Belgian restitution: from Nazi-looted art to colonial-era takings

Posted on: April 14, 2022 by Hélène Deslauriers

Let us consider recent developments in Belgium, both in relation to Nazi-looted art and colonial-era collections. First, a recent return of Nazi-looted art. On February 10 the Royal Museums of Fine Arts in Brussels returned a 1913 painting by Lovis Corinth, Flowers (left), to members of the Mayer family.  The painting represents a bouquet of […]

Restitution and the ‘return of beauty’ – afterthoughts

Posted on: February 4, 2022 by Alexander Herman

On Wednesday evening, I spoke on an online panel organised by the Universities of Bonn and Tel Aviv entitled The Return of Beauty: Restitution of Nazi-Looted Art in Comparative Perspectives. I was asked to introduce the topic of ‘post-colonial’ claims for the return of cultural objects as a point of comparison with claims for the […]

Court orders Crimean Treasures returned to Ukrainian State

Posted on: October 28, 2021 by Emilie Huisman-van Essen

The Amsterdam Court of Appeal delivered its final decision this week in the much-debated case about the golden treasures that have been in the possession of the Allard Pierson Museum (left) in the Netherlands since 2014. Both the lending Crimean Museums and the Ukrainian State have been demanding the return of the objects following the […]

Important collection of Jerusalem Museum kept intact

Posted on: March 16, 2021 by Emily Gould

Updated 6th April 2021 following costs ruling in favour of Hashava Foundation* Readers may recall the report by Meir Heller and Keren Abelow published earlier this year about the proposed sale of important artefacts from Jerusalem’s L.A. Mayer Museum of Islamic Art. We are very pleased to report that a resolution has been reached in […]

Will Israel’s High Court of Justice Manage to Stop one of the Largest Museum Deaccession Sales in the Country’s History?

Posted on: January 24, 2021 by Meir Heller and Keren Abelow

“Hearing this case will open Pandora’s box.” So stated Justice Anat Baron of the Israeli High Court of Justice, on November 18, 2020 delivering a ruling temporarily postponing the sale of 258 lots from Jerusalem’s L.A. Mayer Museum of Islamic Art at Sotheby’s London auction house. The case, which has drawn public ire and the […]

Relief at Supreme Court judgment on business interruption insurance – but with a note of caution…

Posted on: January 20, 2021 by Emily Gould

It has been a worrying and torrid time for many businesses over the past twelve months, not least those in the arts sector. Cancelled exhibitions, revenue loss, closed doors, and staff cuts have become an all too familiar story for many museums and galleries, forced to suspend business-as -usual in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. […]

A tale of two protests: Museum protest then and now

Posted on: November 9, 2020 by Alexander Herman

Emery Mwazulu Diyabanza (left) is a man on a mission. A prolific protestor at museums in France and the Netherlands, he targets objects on display that originate from Africa, lifts them from their stands and parades them around the galleries while making pronouncements on the crimes of European colonialism. ‘Je part avec à la maison,’ he […]

Cassirer heirs may challenge ruling favoring Spanish foundation over Nazi-plundered Pissarro

Posted on: October 26, 2020 by Stephanie Drawdy

The Cassirer heirs recently received another negative ruling in their lawsuit to recover a Nazi-looted painting by French Impressionist Camille Pissarro, but this case has not yet ended. The heirs indicated their intent to request a rehearing of the Ninth Circuit’s holding that, under Spanish law, title to the Pissarro is rightly held by the […]

Done right, selling museum pieces can work – but probably not with Michelangelos

Posted on: October 1, 2020 by Alexander Herman

This comment first appeared on The Art Newspaper website on 25 September 2020. It has been reproduced with the editorial staff’s kind permission. Is the Royal Academy of Arts (RA) going to sell its Michelangelo? It seems a preposterous proposition, but these are rather preposterous times. The idea, apparently floated by a handful of Royal […]