Spotlight on: The Great Wall of China

Debora TreinAnnouncementLeave a Comment

Great Wall of China in Winter

SAFE recognizes the significance of the Great Wall of China as a World Heritage site as well as a monumental symbol of the historical and archaeological richness of Chinese culture. This very richness has made the Great Wall a treasure trove for unscrupulous collectors, an obstacle for uncontrolled urban development, and a target for vandals. SAFE understands the challenges involved in … Read More

Recording Tibetan Cultural Heritage

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Tibetan Gelug monk and Sand mandala

Researchers in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region are racing against the clock to digitize intangible cultural heritage as the region’s Tibetan folk masters reach old age. Since 2005, the autonomous region has collected more than 100,000 stories, 1,500 videos and 40,000 photos of intangible cultural heritage for a digital database. Among them, a Tibetan opera and “The Epic of King Gesar” have been … Read More

Chinese Historical Tomb Site Raided by Gang

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Neolithic Ritual Object Zhulong

A Chinese tomb raider and gang were recently jailed for looting antiquities. This incident was the largest destruction since 1949, when the People’s Republic of China was established by Mao Zedong. The head gang leader became an expert at locating ancient tombs by studying the landscape and using knowledge of astronomy, mountain shapes, and maps. He and four other members … Read More

New legislation introduced to protect international cultural property

Heather LeeHomepage, News, Report1 Comment


SAFE applauds the introduction of a new legislation aiming to improve the efficiency of the U.S. federal efforts to protect international cultural property. On November 13, Representatives Eliot L. Engel (D-NY) and Christ Smith (R-NJ) proposed the Protect and Preserve International Cultural Property Act (H.R. 5703) in response to the terrible state of affairs brought by ISIL/ISIS in Syria and … Read More

Faking It: A Case for Museums of “Fakes”

Beatrice KellyArticle, Commentary4 Comments

Jibaozhai Museum

You may have heard in the news last week that a Chinese Museum has been forced to close following evidence revealing much of its collection to be fake. The museum reportedly cost more than 60 million yuan to build, with twelve exhibition halls of what are now apparently brilliant fakes. The Jibaozhai Museum in Hebai opened in 2010 and has … Read More

China’s “other” looting problem

SAFECORNER10 years after, Commentary, SAFECORNERLeave a Comment

Chinese bronze heads of a rat and rabbit returned by Pinault

One might rejoice at today’s news about the Christie’s owner François Pinault’s offer to return two bronze animal heads to China, a “cause célèbre for Chinese nationalists” has garnered start-studded attention from Ai Weiwei to Jackie Chan, Yves Saint Laurent, Nicolas Sarkozy, the Dalia Lama and now the head of the PPR, maker of luxury fashion goods, husband of movie … Read More

Will Sudan’s History be Washed Away?

Anna SchwartzCommentary, Report1 Comment

Sudan dam

Sudan’s cultural heritage is in peril once again. The recent announcement by the Sudanese government to move forward with its plans to construct three massive Chinese-backed hydroelectric dams along the Nile River and its tributaries has put international archaeological and cultural heritage organizations on high alert. The Nile River, which flows through ten countries from its origin deep in equatorial … Read More

Report on the demolitions in Kashgar and throughout East Turkestan

SAFECORNERAnnouncement, Report1 Comment

We are pleased to share the following report co-authored by Uyghur Human Rights Project‘s Amy Reger and Henryk Szadziewski “Living on the Margins: The Chinese State’s Demolition of Uyghur Communities” which, in the words of the authors: documents the Chinese state’s top-down destruction of Uyghur communities in Kashgar and throughout East Turkestan. We discuss how the destruction of Uyghur neighborhoods has … Read More