Charges of looting used to punish environmental activist?

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In an interesting report from AP: A Tibetan environmentalist once praised as a model philanthropist was sentenced to 15 years in prison Thursday on charges of grave robbing and dealing in looted antiquities, in a case supporters said was aimed at punishing his activism. Would or could an environmentalist rob tombs and engage in the black market trade of antiquities? … Read More

Gulf Coast cultural resources protection

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In response to the Gulf Coast Oil Spill Disaster, the National Parks Service‘s Cultural Resources Geographic Information System Facility (CRGIS) provides an interactive map showing at-risk sites within the affected area as well as other pertinent information. According to their web site, “certain sensitive sites, such as archeological sites, are not displayed.” In addition, among the many laws that come … Read More

Buyers Beware

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Related to the New York Times story commented here, it’s disheartening to see that nothing has changed since Roger Atwood’s 2007 critique regarding U.S. media coverage of antiquities issues. ‘Trophy Hunters With Their Eyes on Interiors‘ is a puff piece that glorifies adventurous exploits in search of the “ultimate” authentic-looking old objects. The story advertises and promotes architects, designers and contractors, … Read More

NYTimes Home & Garden FAIL

Senta GermanCommentary1 Comment

I realize that Home & Garden isn’t the section of The New York Times racking up the most Pulitzers, but that’s no excuse for what was published there. In a piece entitled “Trophy Hunters With Their Eyes on Interiors,” the reader is acquainted with a handful of daring “ultra-high-end contractors” who are tasked by their demanding clients to find all … Read More

Oil in the Wake

Sunny CherkeaCommentary4 Comments

Since April 20, 2010 the world has been reeling from the shock of a massive disaster. Not a natural one, but one inflicted upon us by our own greed and desire to satisfy our way of life and need for petroleum. This disastrous oil spill was caused by British Petroleum’s Deepwater Horizon drilling rig that sank after exploding. President Obama … Read More

SAFE congratulates Bob Wittman on ‘Priceless’

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Robert K. Wittman, who recently retired as Senior Investigator and Founder of FBI’s Art Crime Team, has given us decades of service recovering stolen art and antiquities. He has now also told his story. The new book takes the reader away from Hollywood fantasies and academic theories to the harsh, gritty reality of art crime. Described by Wittman as “a … Read More

Will museum displays tell it as it is?

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Derek Fincham’s post Paracas Textiles makes an interesting point about an exhibition of endangered textiles from Peru in the Museum of World Culture, Gothenburg, Sweden. Entitled “A Stolen World”, the exhibition not only highlights one of “the most sought-after heritage objects in the illegal market“, it describes how the textiles were looted and donated to the Ethnographic Department of Göteborg … Read More

Shelby White’s Foundation Expansion

Oscar MuscarellaCommentary2 Comments

In February 2010 the billionaire Shelby White created a selected group of individuals to function within the Leon Levy Foundation, its purpose to “make available information” from excavated sites that have not been published. But information only from nations having a partage system at the time of excavation, i.e. a division of finds between the host nation and the excavators, … Read More