During the occupation of Athens by the Ottoman Empire, over 50% of the Parthenon sculptures were taken by questionable or unscrupulous means by then Ambassador and Lord Elgin for his home in Scotland that were later purchased by the British Parliament for the British Museum.
The International Organizing Committee – Australia – for the Reunification of the Parthenon Marbles (IOC-A-RPM) will host a two day second International Colloquy Parthenon: An Icon of Global Citizenship beginning on November 15, 2013 at the University of Sydney Nicholson Museum that will concentrate the dialogue in four areas: education, economy, activism and litigation. A call for papers and expert speakers is open until July 31, 2013.
Why now? What are the key points to ensure the return of the Parthenon sculptures?
One of the many paradoxes of war is destruction with simultaneous protection of civilians and cultural heritage. We know the political figures and weapons of war and see photographs in the press of anonymous bloody lifeless corpses twisted in the wreckage of urban settings. How can one possibly think of cultural heritage with so much human suffering. Yet, cultural monuments are targeted, pillaged, looted, destroyed all too often.
Cultural heritage is for the survivors, the future, world knowledge and ultimately, a record of human accomplishments.
World Heritage Day is April 18th. What will you do to help protect cultural heritage? Continue reading
When least expected, an answer comes forward that goes beyond a country’s claim, international law and suggests there is a global sense of decency when addressing cultural heritage and patrimony. Dr. Gary Vikan, during one of his last public lectures as the director of the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland and completely not related to the topic of his lecture on his upcoming book on the Shroud of Turin, was asked, “Should the Elgin Marbles be returned?” Continue reading
Are the Brits confused? What a curious gathering of passionate art collectors in Britain today. Imagine the dignified antiquity collectors in the same room as those just as passionate to own – graffiti. Continue reading
Edward Dodwell and Lord Elgin meet again, two hundreds years later. A rarely seen collection of illustrations by Edward Dodwell, a painter and reporter of ancient Greece is currently on display at the British Museum. In his writings, Dodwell tells of “being present when the Parthenon was despoiled of its finest sculpture”. Now, his illustrations are being presented at the British Museum, while the “finest sculpture” is on permanent display – the Parthenon Marbles. Continue reading
Delicious irony when Greek mythology filled with gods for love, wine and harvest is trumped by Biblical parables on theft, sibling rivalry and coveting someone else’s property. Only the absurd can be told in an imaginary tale of a king, his sons and their choices in art. Continue reading