Appello del 2002 al Presidente della Repubblica
LEGGI
BENI IN PERICOLO
INTERVENTI E RECENSIONI
RASSEGNA STAMPA
COMUNICATI DELLE ASSOCIAZIONI
EVENTI
BIBLIOGRAFIA
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

There's No Place but Home For This Stolen Italian Art
Sarah Delaney
The Washington Post 19/12/2007

ROME -- An unusual exhibit of archaeological treasures opens this week here with a very clear message: Italy will no longer sit back while its artistic patrimony is spirited out of the country by grave robbers, traffickers and unscrupulous art dealers.

Featured at the presidential Quirinal Palace are 68 exquisite vases, statues and other antiquities that Italy has recently recovered from U.S. museums. These are objects that over decades had been illegally snatched from Italian soil, Culture Minister Francesco Rutelli said when introducing the exhibit.

The show is the result of a 10-year campaign by the Culture Ministry and a special group of the carabinieri, or military police, specializing in art and archaeological theft to reclaim some of the innumerable objects looted from Italian soil.

The pieces displayed are some of the most prized from the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, the Princeton University Art Museum and private galleries. They were acquired in a not-so-distant past, when the museums were less rigorous in checking the ownership history of art and before strict laws regarding art smuggling were in place in Italy.

Often the museums had acquired the items without knowing they'd been stolen.

Rutelli, who over the past year or so increased pressure on the museums to return certain works, said the objects had "come home after an odyssey," a concept evoked by the title of the show, "Nostoi: Returned Masterpieces." "Nostoi" is a Greek word used in epic poems to describe a long voyage to one's homeland.

He said in a news conference that the objects in the show had been "dug out from the bowels of the earth, deprived of their identity and taken to other countries." There was a time, he allowed, when there were many precious objects either buried or languishing in warehouses that some authorities believed might be better off in a foreign museum. Those days are gone, he said. But the renewed efforts to bring home work of Italian origin is "not nationalistic, but universal, because all national patrimonies belong to the world," he said.

Giving a nod to a new spirit of collaboration and consensus between Italy and major museums, Rutelli said the return of the artifacts represented "an epochal change," and that "if we dry up the waters of illegal art trafficking, it will be much more difficult for tombaroli [the word, which means "grave diggers," refers to those who raid archaeological sites] and others to operate."

Rutelli said museums will be repaid for their cooperation with longer loans of prestigious antiquities from Italy and praised the "new standards of ethics that American museums have adopted."

Most of the works date from the 7th through 2nd centuries B.C. and are Etruscan or Greek, many from the period when the Greeks colonized the southern half of the Italian peninsula known then as Magna Graecia. Exquisite ceramics and pottery make up much of the exhibition. There are large kraters (wide containers used to mix water and wine), anphorae (narrow-mouthed jars with handles) and kylikes (dishes with curved sides and handles for food). Many were painted with mythological figures in red on a black background, by some of the best artists of the time.

Forty pieces came from the Getty in Malibu, Calif., the museum with which Italy has had the most contentious relationship. Marion True, the former Getty curator of antiquities, and art dealer Robert Hecht are on trial in Rome on charges of conspiring to traffic in stolen art.

Other pieces, including a 2nd-century marble statue of a Roman empress known as Vibia Sabina, came from the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, which returned a total of 12 pieces. A space in the Rome exhibit is waiting for the famous and long-contested Euphronios krater that the Metropolitan Museum of Art will deliver next month, one of five objects the museum will return.

A 6th-century B.C. Etruscan bronze sculpture from a private collector in Switzerland was returned to Italy only a week ago and put in the show. Also shown is an extremely rare ivory mask of a deity from the 1st century B.C. It was dug up by a tombarolo near Bracciano, a town north of Rome.

Italian art sleuths have been instrumental in recovering objects stolen from Pakistan and Iran, Rutelli said, and he believes Italy can play a crucial role in global efforts to block illegal trafficking in art and archaeological objects.

The National Archeological Museum of Athens lent a marble kore, or maiden, from the 6th century. It had been stolen and exhibited at the Getty, which then returned it. Greece has joined Italy in its efforts to recover looted ancient artifacts.

The exhibit opens to the public Friday and runs through March 2.



news

25-06-2016
LETTERA APPELLO PER IL LICEO CLASSICO

24-06-2016
RASSEGNA STAMPA: aggiornata al giorno 24/06/2016

22-06-2016
TAR UMBRIA, sentenza 504/2016

20-06-2016
La legge sui Parchi va rafforzata, adeguata al Codice per il Paesaggio e non stravolta

14-06-2016
Comitato per la Bellezza: La Soprintendenza interviene a tutelare tutta l'area della battaglia di Montecassino

30-05-2016
Cultura a Roma in tempo di elezioni, intervento di Sergio Rinaldi Tufi

29-05-2016
Vittorio Emiliani: Vicino il s alle modifiche che stravolgono la legge sui Parchi, fronte ambientalista diviso

28-05-2016
Lanci Ansa su concorso Mibact. Dimissioni e proteste

20-05-2016
IV Dialogo sulla sostenibilit. Una cultura per la societ dell'informazione. Cultural Heritage: arti, patrimonio culturale e beni comuni

20-05-2016
I dipendenti del Mibact non possono parlare con i media, la Fnsi: Tradito larticolo 21 della Costituzione

17-05-2016
Consiglio superiore dei BC: mozione per la libera riproduzione di beni bibliografici e archivistici

16-05-2016
Vendita dei beni in centro storico a Firenze: risposta UNESCO

15-05-2016
Associazione Restauratori d'Italia: una protesta per il concorso dei 500

14-05-2016
Intervento di Vittorio Emiliani. Emergenza Cultura: La7 straccia la RAI finanziata al 66 % dal canone. Uno scandalo

04-05-2016
6 e 7 maggio Emergenza Cultura: manifestazione a Roma

03-05-2016
Interpellanza dei 5 Stelle sugli oneri di urbanizzazione

02-05-2016
FRANCESCHINI, UN MILIARDO DI EURO PER LA CULTURA

01-05-2016
La storia dell'arte e la riforma Franceschini: ragioni di un conflitto

28-04-2016
BANDO Disciplina della procedura di selezione pubblica per l'assunzione di 500 funzionari presso il MIBACT

23-04-2016
Indebolimento della tutela e riforme 'di sinistra': intervento di Vittorio Emiliani

15-04-2016
Pubblicato il bando del premio Silvia Dell'Orso 2016: un riconoscimento alla buona divulgazione

14-04-2016
SETTIS sulla Costituzione italiana

11-04-2016
Dalla tutela lo sviluppo della riserva del litorale romano. Comunicato stampa del convegno

10-04-2016
Fatto in Italia - SETTIS - EMILIANO - Discussione sul prossimo referendum del 17 aprile sulle trivellazioni e sul decimo anniversario dell'abbattimento di Punta Perotti.

10-04-2016
Completata la disarticolazione delle istituzioni di tutela. Documento approvato da Italia Nostra su proposta di Giovanni Losavio

09-04-2016
Vittorio Emiliani: Parchi Nazionali: meno tutele, pi spazio alle lobby

08-04-2016
Abruzzo, la paura di essere dimenticati

07-04-2016
PALMIRA dopo l'ISIS

05-04-2016
Nozze, brindisi e feste nei musei e nei siti. Intervento di Vittorio Emiliani

05-04-2016
Documentario su L'Aquila il 6 aprile su Rai3

Archivio news