Showing posts with label Middle East. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Middle East. Show all posts

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Cultural Security News (Nov. 18 - Nov. 24)

China’s play in the political economy of art and culture
In politics, the discovery of a Renoir at a flea-market in Maryland illustrated the controversy over museum care of donated collections.  The relative of a donor to the Baltimore Museum of Art not only was disappointed that some of the entrusted paintings were not on display but also discovered that at least one painting had been stolen and missing from the museum for over fifty years. On a positive note, Yale returned the last of the artifacts from Machu Picchu in a process of repatriation that lasted almost two years.
In a crossover of politics and economics, Reuters reported on the “Occupy Museums” movement, which questions the cultural security of the art market in the face of high-end collectors bidding up the prices of “high-end” works with a seeming disregard for artistic or aesthetic merit. In the interest of cultural security, Dubai hosted an architectural conservation conference in the interest of protecting cultural heritage and identity during development in the Middle East.
3873f7d006e9064b1aae44ef2989f4a0.jpgIn a crossover of politics and security, a media initiative by the government in Beijing to promote Chinese culture and economy abroad aims to increase China’s soft power, while Joseph Nye remains skeptical of the changes for success in light of a repressive domestic policy.
In economics, major auctions houses, Poly International Auction and China Guardian Auctions, from China planned debuts in Hong Kong to coincide with annual auctions by Sotheby’s and Christie’s. Coincidentally, an article in South China Morning Post examined a range of information sources and investment vehicles to mitigate risk in the art market. In Egypt, on-line venues are starting to provide local collectors with access to affordable works and enable new local artists to market works globally, and India endeavored to create awareness of and access to local art with a fifth India Art Fair. Reportedly, Russian collectors prefer to acquire works in London, while galleries in Moscow are closing. Despite a stalling art market, the combined sales of post-war and contemporary art by Sotheby’s and Christie’s in New York totaled close to $1 billion in the past week.
In a crossover of economics and security, the success of the market for contemporary art in Istanbul has drawn criticism from the conservative Muslim majority in Turkey. In Australia, new regulations on insurance and storage for artworks in super funds have lowered the appeal for investors.
In security, an article in Foreign Policy provided history on calls by Islamists to demolish ancient Egyptian monuments. An article on BlouinARTINFO provided background on available evidence that suggests that trafficking in fine art and antiquities intersects with organized crime and perhaps funds terrorist groups. Meanwhile, the success of forgers in copying 20th-century abstract and expressionist artists has increased the risk of litigation for professionals and foundations that authenticate works. On positive note, the return of a mummified Maori head from Canada to New Zealand reflected efforts of the past twenty-five years to repatriate human remains for proper burial by the Maori.
 For similar news, visit Cultural Security News.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Cultural Security News (Jun. 17 - Jun. 23)

Japan's Cultural Property and the Indian Art Market
News photoSeveral stories indicated Japan as active in the politics and security of cultural property. Japan recovered four Buddhist statues that had been stolen from a temple in Konan, Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs put six cultural treasures stolen from temples in Japan on an international "wanted list," and nations such as Madagascar, Turkey and Korea are seeking returns from Japan. India made news in the market and in art crime. Indian artists are starting to see their works resell at appreciated values at auction, and an English forger who focused on works by renowned Indian artists from the past century, F.N. Souza, M.F. Husain and Sayed Haider Raza, went to jail. Meanwhile, Russian art sales made a splash in China's summer season, and wealthy collectors from Russia, China, and the Middle East contributed to booming sales in London.
For similar news, visit Cultural Security News.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Cultural Security News (Apr. 29 - May 05)

Three Dimensions of Cultural Security in Focus
The Fitzwilliam Museum has released these photos of some of the stolen artifacts in the hopes someone will come forward with information leading to their returnEvents of the past week offered particularly clear examples of the different aspects of "cultural security." In physical security, thieves targeted Chinese artifacts in the Fitzwilliam Museum at Cambridge University, and gunmen looted the historic Krak des Chevaliers in Syria. In economics, the sale of Edvard Munch's "The Scream" for $120 million affirmed the financial security of the art market by setting a new auction record, while a politically induced exodus of oligarchs threatened the security of the contemporary art market in Russia. In diplomacy, reportedly, artists from the Middle East express cultural identity in works they create while abroad, and Italy vigilantly pursued repatriation of the bronze statue of a "victorious athlete" from The Getty. In the meantime, "cultural security" was in the news with a Judiciary Chief in Iran urging that "cultural security is the most important kind of security" and an academic in Lithuania contending that "unease of the academicians should be called the issue of demographic and cultural security."
For similar news, visit Cultural Security News.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Cultural Security News (Apr. 15 - Apr. 21)

Art of Financial and Economic Strategies
The presence of Chinese collectors continues to increase in Hong Kong and spread to London and Paris, as reported by The Guardian. Their collecting interests, according to the Taipei Times, range from connoisseurship to purely financial considerations of art as a "safe haven" for investments. Correspondingly, the global interest in art and antique insurance grows with AXA Art estimating a $5.4 billion market in annual premiums. At the same time, the role of art in development strategies in the Middle East experienced acceleration and revision. For example, the Royal Family of Qatar is expected bid on the last privately held version of Edvard Munch's "The Scream" in early May, but reportedly financial concerns have delayed the construction of the Guggenheim in Abu Dhabi.
For similar news, visit Cultural Security News.