Category Archives: Repatriation

Latest issue of our journal Art Antiquity and Law available now

Posted on: November 26, 2022 by Ruth Redmond-Cooper

The latest issue of Art Antiquity and Law has now been published and hard copies are being sent to subscribers and members, with the digital version available online to subscribers who have chosen this option. This issue contains a thought-provoking piece by Alexander Herman in which he points out that the recent Charities Act 2022 […]

Museums, restitution and the new Charities Act

Posted on: September 25, 2022 by Alexander Herman

An important change to charity law that will affect the ability of museums in England and Wales to return collection items was passed by Parliament in February as part of the Charities Act 2022 and is due to come into force this autumn [update, see below]. Charity law is especially important in the cultural sector […]

Arts Council England releases new guidance for museums on restitution and repatriation

Posted on: August 5, 2022 by Alexander Herman and Emily Gould

Today, Arts Council England released its guidance on restitution and repatriation for English museums. Restitution and Repatriation: A Practical Guide for Museums in England offers guidelines, best practice and case studies for the museum sector, helping institutions act appropriately and considerately in the context of claims for the return of collection objects. It replaces previous […]

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 […]

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 […]

Michael Steinhardt’s antiquities and the legal/moral divide

Posted on: December 9, 2021 by Alexander Herman

Collector Michael Steinhardt has been in the news this week, and not for the right reasons. On Monday, an agreement was announced whereby the New York DA’s Office would not prosecute Steinhardt for acquiring looted antiquities and, in exchange, Steinhardt would surrender 180 such artefacts to the DA, and these will soon (one hopes) be […]

Restitution – what’s really going on?

Posted on: September 30, 2021 by Alexander Herman

This piece first appeared on The Art Newspaper website on 28 September 2021. *** Much is happening in the global debate over the rightful place of cultural objects. Not a week goes by, it seems, without an important return being announced. Last week it was the return at a ceremony in Washington DC of the ancient […]

July issue of Art Antiquity and Law out now

Posted on: July 27, 2021 by Ruth Redmond-Cooper

The July issue of Art Antiquity and Law has now gone to press and hard copies of the burgundy journal will soon be landing on doorsteps around the world, with digital copies finding their way to inboxes. For those interested in subscribing, please see here. This issue contains articles and case notes on a wide […]

The Benin Bronzes – recent developments

Posted on: May 7, 2021 by Emily Gould

In mid-March this year, the German government announced that it was close to finalising plans to return to Nigeria Benin Bronzes from around 25 of its museums. The statement was swiftly followed by news of proposed returns from corners of the globe as disparate as Aberdeen and  California. Developments were also in evidence in the […]

Macron, restitution and French bureaucracy

Posted on: December 17, 2020 by Alexander Herman

An interesting debate has taken place in France between its two chambers of Parliament: the Senate and the National Assembly. It has arisen in the context of a Bill presented at the National Assembly on 16 July to restitute to the countries of Benin and Senegal a total of 27 items held within French public […]