May 2023: News roundup

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Two artists’ homes listed among the most endangered historical sites in the US

The National Trust for Historic Preservation has named the homes of two Black artists, the Henry Ossawa Tanner House in Philadelphia and the L.V. Hull Home and Studio in Kosciusko, Mississippi, among the 11 most endangered historic places in the US. Both structures have severely deteriorated, putting their futures in doubt. Built in 1871, the Tanner House was the family home of Henry Ossawa Tanner, who was one of the first African American painters to receive international recognition. Meanwhile, L.V. Hull turned her Mississippi home into a vibrant art environment, creating assemblages that drew visitors from around the world.

homes listed among most endangered historical sites in the US
L.V. Hull Home & Studio, Kosciusko, Mississippi. Artist L.V. Hull stands within her art environment on the front steps to her home.
Photo by Bruce West

With an Additional $12 M., Getty Foundation Announces Science-Focused 2024 PST Shows

The Getty Foundation, Art & Science Collide
Diorama at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.

The Getty Foundation has revealed the theme for its Pacific Standard Time (PST) exhibition, which will be titled Art & Science Collide. The foundation will commit at least $17M toward the research and realization of the PST exhibitions, an increase of $12M from the initial $5M announced in early 2021. The exhibition will have eight themes including ecology and environmental justice, technologies of seeing and control, global cultures, and claiming tomorrow. Exhibitions will take place at several Southern California museums in the autumn of 2024. The foundation also announced that PST will become a quinquennial event, occurring every five years.

An International Effort to Tackle Antiquities Trafficking Seized More Than 11,000 Stolen Artifacts Across Europe Last Year

Operation Pandora VII, an international effort to combat the illegal trafficking of cultural goods, has led to the arrest of 60 individuals and the recovery of over 11,000 artifacts across 14 European countries. The operation, which was led by Spanish authorities, involved inspections across airports, ports, border crossings, auction houses, museums, and private residences. It lasted between 13-24 September 2022 and was accompanied by two weeks of cyber check patrols in May and October, resulting in more than 4,000 stolen goods being seized. The artifacts seized included ancient coins, religious sculptures, jewelry, and rare books. The operation has resulted in more than 150,000 stolen cultural objects being seized and hundreds of arrests.

Stolen Artifacts Across Europe
Ancient Greek coins seized by police. Photo of Greek icons recovered by Hellenic Police. Photo: Europol.

Stolen Ancient Tomb Carvings Sat in Storage at the Met Museum for Decades. Now, They’ve Been Returned to China

Stolen Ancient Tomb Carvings
Chinese Consul General Huang Ping with an ancient stone carving seized by the Manhattan DA’s office. Photo Huang Ping via Twitter.

A pair of 7th-century stone carvings collectively valued at nearly $3.5 million were repatriated to China. The pieces were cut out and stolen from a funerary platform in the early 1990s. They were loaned to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1998 by prominent art collector and philanthropist Shelby White. Although they remained in the museum’s storage area for 25 years, they have never been displayed. The retrieval operation is part of a wider criminal investigation into Mr. White’s collection, which involved the seizure of 89 antiquities by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.


Sotheby’s Metaverse Gets an Upgrade, Allowing Collectors to Sell to Each Other

Sotheby’s Metaverse, the auction house’s NFT marketplace, will expand to include secondary sales, allowing collectors to sell directly to each other. The platform will operate entirely on-chain, enabling peer-to-peer transactions on both Ethereum and Polygon. Metaverse will differ from secondary NFT marketplaces like OpenSea by allowing collectors to list works from only 13 artists, a strategy designed to avoid dealing with bad actors while keeping the quality of works on offer high. The platform has also committed to enforcing artist royalties, which have become optional on all other major NFT marketplaces. Sotheby’s first launched Metaverse in the fall of 2021.

Sotheby's Metaverse
Sofia Crespo, Shared Moments of Observation.

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One response to “May 2023: News roundup”

  1. Artist Francis Antony Kodankanath avatar

    Great thought process and excellent execution 🙏🏼❤️👍🏼👏🏻♥️