Tag Archives: cultural property

Fifty years on: the meaning of the 1970 UNESCO Convention

Posted on: June 18, 2020 by Alexander Herman

Amidst the sad turmoil (for some) and the uncertainty (for all) brought on by the pandemic and the resultant lockdown, it is perhaps more forgivable than usual to miss an important anniversary. I am referring here to the fact that 2020 marks 50 years since the adoption of the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting […]

A final judgment? Court of Appeal rules in favour of the Ivory Act 2018

Posted on: June 5, 2020 by Charlotte Dunn

We have been following the debate over the UK’s position on ivory on the IAL blog over the past few years. The latest development has seen the Court of Appeal uphold the decision of the High Court, finding the Ivory Act 2018 to be lawful. What does this mean for the future of the ivory […]

Multi-million dollar collection remains with the Netherlands after heirs lose U.S. and Dutch claims

Posted on: May 13, 2020 by Stephanie Drawdy

Updated: May 27, 2020 Efforts to recover an art collection sold in the Netherlands during Nazi reign have met with a fruitless end – yet again. A U.S. District Court recently decided that the sale of the collection constituted a “genocidal taking” involving duress in violation of international law.[1] However, the alleged heir to the […]

Lessons in Collecting from the Museum of the Bible

Posted on: April 14, 2020 by Charlotte Dunn

The Museum of the Bible has been a site of continual controversy since its opening in November 2017. The issues it has faced range from alleged thefts and forgeries to the illicit trade in antiquities. More than anything else, the Museum’s difficulties have demonstrated the importance of careful provenance research before acquiring artefacts for a […]

Year in review: recap on 2019

Posted on: December 26, 2019 by Alexander Herman

If nothing else, the end of a calendar year offers the chance to step back and review the larger developments in a particular area or field. This is certainly true about the world of art and cultural heritage law where it can often be hard to see the forest for the trees. So many legal […]

Revising the definition of ‘treasure’

Posted on: May 1, 2019 by Geoffrey Bennett

Assiduous followers of the media, and possibly even those with no interest at all, may have noticed that Her Majesty’s Government has in recent months been slightly preoccupied with European legal perspectives. It therefore came as a welcome surprise that in February 2019 the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) announced a long-awaited […]

Law, Restitution and the Benin Bronzes

Posted on: December 23, 2018 by Alexander Herman

In 1897, British troops marched on Benin City, capital of the fabled West African kingdom of Benin, ruled over by a powerful Oba. The attack was called a ‘punitive expedition’ because it was a retaliatory response to the Oba having massacred a British delegation of eight officials, two traders and local escorts the previous month. […]

UK Museums Bid to Save Titanic Artefacts

Posted on: September 26, 2018 by Holly Woodhouse

Hedge funds are competing with a consortium of British museums to purchase 5,500 artefacts salvaged from the Titanic, which sank on its maiden voyage in April 1912 with the loss of 1,500 lives. The current owner of the artefacts, Premier Exhibitions, is selling them after filing for bankruptcy in the United States in 2016.  The […]

Court decision on Caillebotte export rocks the boat

Posted on: September 4, 2018 by Alexander Herman

A once-in-a-generation case has caused major ripples in the Canadian museum world. And we’re not talking about the attempted sale of a Chagall by the National Gallery of Canada this spring. No, this was an actual court case, before the Federal Court of Canada, to determine whether the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board (the […]

Changes on the way for Japan’s cultural property law

Posted on: July 19, 2018 by Makoto Shimada

On 1st June 2018, the Kokkai, the National Diet of Japan, enacted the Substantial Amendment to the Law for the Protection of Cultural Property. The new Act will come into force on 1st April 2019. Under the 1950 Law for the Protection of Cultural Properties, cultural property with historical or artistic value is selected by the government […]