LEGGI
BENI IN PERICOLO
INTERVENTI E RECENSIONI
RASSEGNA STAMPA
COMUNICATI DELLE ASSOCIAZIONI
EVENTI
BIBLIOGRAFIA
STORIA e FORMAZIONE del CODICE DEI BENI CULTURALI E DEL PAESAGGIO
LINK
CHI SIAMO: REDAZIONE DI PATRIMONIOSOS
BACHECA DELLE TESI
per ricevere aggiornamenti sul sito inserisci il tuo indirizzo e-mail
patrimonio sos
in difesa dei beni culturali e ambientali

stampa Versione stampabile

Getty's accord removes shadow
Jason Felch and Ari Bloomekatz
Los Angeles Times 3/8/2007

The specter of recent scandals is starting to lift from the museum and its programs on news of an agreement to return antiquities to Italy.
A day after the J. Paul Getty Museum announced the return of 40 prized artifacts to Italy, a sense of relief swept across the Getty Center's Brentwood campus, home to the Getty Trust and three other programs that had been largely overshadowed by the museum's antiquities scandal.
Many who work at the Getty said the accord Wednesday closed not just the painful dispute over allegedly looted artifacts but a period of relentless controversy under the trust's former chief executive, Barry Munitz.
"I had a staff member tear up Wednesday at the thought that this was all behind us and we could continue our work unfettered," said Timothy Whalen, director of the Getty Conservation Institute since 1998. "It's affected the organization at a psychic level for a long time."
Munitz was forced out in 2005 after institutional unrest and an investigation by the California attorney general into his use of Getty resources for personal benefit.
The two overlapping scandals directly affected only a sliver of the trust's activities, but have made the Getty the subject of front-page stories for the past three years. It led directly or indirectly to the departure of much of the institution's senior leadership, including its executive staff, chief spokeswoman, board chairman, leading donor, museum director and antiquities curator, among others.
Many of the Getty's administrative troubles have been tackled over the last year, but the lingering antiquities fight with Italy was, for some, like a finger jabbing into unhealed institutional wounds. The 40 antiquities were purchased for nearly $40 million over 30 years. No compensation will be given for their return.
Although the scandal's toll will be felt most heavily by the museum, the dispute with Italy over Getty antiquities was registered across the institution's various programs.
The Conservation Institute works more closely with Italian colleagues than with any others at the trust, Whalen said, and would have suffered greatly under the cultural embargo Italy's Ministry of Culture threatened repeatedly during negotiations.
Whalen said several of the institute's Italian partners said they received letters from the ministry raising a real concern that their joint conservation projects across Italy would be jeopardized by the dispute.
The Getty's agreement has also helped heal what Whalen called an "intellectual tension" between the museum's drive to acquire antiquities and the Conservation Institute's work to protect archaeological sites from looting.
"That tension will now be in less sharp relief," Whalen said.
There was the sense that the dual scandals had begun to define the institution, at the expense of the important work done in the Getty's other programs, said Deborah Marrow, the director of the Getty's grant-making foundation who acted as temporary chief executive after Munitz's sudden departure.
Marrow said she had four key goals during her brief time running the Getty Trust: recruiting a new chief executive, cooperating with investigations by the Council on Foundations and the state attorney general, and settling the dispute with Italy.
"Antiquities was the final piece," Marrow said with some relief.
The art historian said she welcomed the opportunity to refocus on such things as the Getty's grant of more than $450,000 for the conservation of paintings in Rome's Santuario Scala Santa, which had been nearly obscured by time.
Michael Brand, who became museum director in January 2006 in the midst of the controversy, said the resolution would allow him to embark on new projects and entertain new possibilities.
"Should we collect more non-Western art? Should we collect more contemporary art?"
He added that he hoped the new agreement with Italy might allow the country to contribute to a planned show of the Italian sculptor, painter and architect Bernini a year from now.
Getty officials said they were eager to turn over a new leaf and fulfill the potential that the Getty's wealth and talent has long promised.
Francesco Rutelli, Italy's minister of culture, announced at a news conference in Rome on Thursday that he was dropping a civil case demanding the return of the 40 artifacts. Italy continues to negotiate with the Getty over three additional artifacts, he said.
Rutelli also said the agreement would benefit Marion True, the Getty's former antiquities curator, who is on trial in Rome, accused of trafficking in looted art.
The Getty's troubles have not seemed to affect its loyal patrons, who flocked to the Getty Villa on Thursday to begin saying goodbye to many of their favorite works.
Janice Levich of Woodland Hills brought her 13-year old grandson, Noah Ross, to see the objects she had admired for years.
The two had debated the Getty's decision to return the objects on the drive out.
"How would you feel if [the Italians] came and took American artifacts?" Levich said she asked her grandson.
She reminded him that many museums around the world, including those in Britain and France, have many artifacts from other nations, and that she thought they should be returned.
Once at the Getty, Ross walked into the Gods and Goddesses Gallery and saw the Aphrodite for the first time. "Wow," Noah said. "I didn't think it was going to be so big."
"I really have mixed emotions," Levich said about the return of the artifacts. "This has been the best thing in Los Angeles, but [the statues] really belong to Italy, they really do."
"I needed to sit back and take it in before it goes away," Levich said, although she has quite a bit of time yet. The Aphrodite will stay put until 2010. The majority of the objects being returned will be on display at the Villa until the fall.
Other visitors were less concerned about the loss.
Kateri Alexander of Westlake Village said the best part of the Getty experience is not necessarily even the art.
"It's the ambience," she said.
Her thoughts were echoed by Elizabeth Wright, a visitor from Hood River, Ore., who doubts that returning objects would have a huge effect on the Getty's crowds.
"It's pretty amazing," Wright said, admiring the setting more than any particular piece of art.



news

25-09-2020
RASSEGNA STAMPA aggiornata al giorno 25 settembre 2020

03-09-2020
Storia dell'arte cancellata, lo strano caso di un dramma inesistente, di Andrea Ragazzini

27-07-2020
Il Consiglio Direttivo dell'Associazione Italiana di Studi Bizantini su Santa Sofia

06-06-2020
Sicilia. Appello di docenti, esperti e storici dell'arte all'Ars: "Ritirate il ddl di riforma dei Beni culturali"

06-05-2020
Due articoli da "Mi riconosci? sono un professionista dei beni culturali"

05-05-2020
Confiscabile il bene culturale detenuto allestero anche se in presunta buona fede

30-04-2020
In margine a un intervento di Vincenzo Trione sul distanziamento nei musei

26-04-2020
Vi segnaliamo: Il caso del Sacramentario di Frontale: commento alla sentenza della Corte di Cassazione

25-04-2020
Turismo di prossimità, strada possibile per conoscere il nostro patrimonio

24-04-2020
Un programma per la cultura: un documento per la ripresa

22-04-2020
Il 18 maggio per la Giornata internazionale dei musei notizie dall'ICOM

15-04-2020
Inchiesta: Cultura e lavoro ai tempi di COVID-19

15-04-2020
Museums will move on: message from ICOM President Suay Aksoy

08-04-2020
Al via il progetto di formazione a distanza per il personale MiBACT e per i professionisti della cultura

06-04-2020
Lettera - mozione in vista della riunione dell'Eurogruppo del 7 aprile - ADESIONI

30-03-2020
Da "Finestre sull'arte" intervista a Eike Schmidt

30-03-2020
I danni del terremoto ai musei di Zagabria

29-03-2020
Le iniziative digitali dei musei, siti archeologici, biblioteche, archivi, teatri, cinema e musica.

21-03-2020
Comunicato della Consulta di Topografia Antica sulla tutela degli archeologi nei cantieri

16-03-2020
Lombardia: emergenza Covid-19. Lettera dell'API (Archeologi del Pubblico Impiego)

12-03-2020
Arte al tempo del COVID-19. Fra le varie iniziative online vi segnaliamo...

06-03-2020
Sul Giornale dell'Arte vi segnaliamo...

06-02-2020
I musei incassano, i lavoratori restano precari: la protesta dei Cobas

31-01-2020
Nona edizione di Visioni d'Arte, rassegna promossa dall'Associazione Silvia Dell'Orso

06-01-2020
Da Finestre sull'arte: Trump minaccia di colpire 52 obiettivi in Iran, tra cui siti culturali. Ma attaccare la cultura è crimine di guerra

06-01-2020
Dalla stampa estera di ieri: minacce di Trump contro siti culturali iraniani

20-12-2019
Riorganizzazione Mibact, Casini: non è ennesimo Lego, ma manutenzione amministrativa in continuità

04-12-2019
Libero riuso delle riproduzioni di beni culturali: articolo di Daniele Manacorda sul "Giornale dell'arte"

14-11-2019
Cosa succederà alla Biblioteca Guarneriana di S. Daniele del Friuli? Un appello dei cittadini al sindaco

04-10-2019
Unicredit mette all'asta da Christie's capolavori della sua collezione

Archivio news