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Nazi loot | Art Theft Crackdown | “Cultural Property” | Repatriation

The maker of baking products, muesli and pizza, promises to return any plundered art to heirs of Jewish owners

READ: German baker Dr Oetker finds possible Nazi loot in company art collection

Returns of cultural property

Under the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, Canada has returned the following cultural property to its country of origin since 1997

Cree artist Kent Monkman says the title of his exhibit “Shame and Prejudice” reflects the “harsh” experiences of indigenous peoples in Canada over the last 150 years.  The show opened recently in Toronto then will tour the country.

Source: Video: Art show delves into Canada’s treatment of indigenous peoples – The Globe and Mail

Tip of the iceburg

Tip leads police to long-missing pieces by famed Quebec artist in Montreal home, but underworld art trade is widespread and international

Source: Recovery of three stolen Riopelle paintings just tip of iceberg – The Globe and Mail

By LT

Hi everyone,

I wanted to share the Smoke Signals sculpture (blurry top photo) by  Allan Houser (Apache) on display at the Mashantucket Pequot’s casino Foxwoods.  The tribe has amassed a huge collection of art.  Why?  They could afford it, being the world’s richest tribe, and they wanted to preserve a variety of Native American artworks, and support the artist and his or her family…  The trickle-down theory is traditional practice in Indian Country.  When I worked for them, our newspaper staff had a tour of the paintings and sculptures at the casino and at the Pequot Museum.  It was incredible.

Art has huge value! As you can see, it’s a victim of trafficking, too! Across this planet, ART is vitally important, especially when we live in turbulent times.  With poverty in the majority of tribal communities and in Third Worlds, art can save lives, when someone displays a talent, like painting, or music, or acting.  That talent can be your ticket off the rez, and later, with enough money earned, it’s your ticket back.   Many many cultures send their young adults out to make money so they can send money home…

Found/Acquired: Alberta (Americas,North America,Canada,Alberta) 1850-1900 Acquisition notes Part of the Freeman Collection, a body of material collected c.1900 on the “Blood Reserve”, a Kainai reservation in Alberta, by Frederick and Maude Deane-Freeman. Frederick was a government official charged with distributing rations to the native families, and knew the people he and his wife collected the material from by name. Most of the collection was purchased by the British Museum in 1903 with assistance from Dr. Robert Bell and Lord Minto. This object was originally owned by Red Crow, a noted warrior from the band of Kainai known as Fish Eaters and for many years paramount chief of the Kainai.

Trading art and artifact for money started in colonial times.  Were Native artists paid well?  I seriously doubt it.  Look at the British Museum and you can see how government officials and trading posts made trades with Indians for centuries.  Robbed? Ah, I think so!  Or anthropologists who came in and dug stuff up and called it their own.  Those artifacts are now called “Cultural Property” and some looted countries and tribal nations are calling to get their property returned.  And we know the Nazi stole artworks and the Jews are asking for it back.

Art has value for its history, too.  Art defines who we are as humanity! [This act of getting it back to the original owners is called repatriation.]

In the US, big organizations like the National Endowment of the Arts help fund today’s artists and their communities, which helps tourism, which creates even more value and jobs.  With t-rump, the arts are entering the danger zone:

President Donald Trump sent shockwaves through the art world when it shared its federal budget, which calls for completely scrapping the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The president and his pals are evidently blind to the value of art, but as many of us know so well, both agencies have supported countless individuals and organizations with the roughly .004% of the federal budget that each receives annually.

To illustrate just how beneficial the NEA’s work has been, artist and environmental engineer Tega Brain has programmed a website that scrolls through the types of  grants the NEA awarded last year alone. Like end credits of a movie, each funded project moves slowly down your screen in bright colors to form a simple but clear message: we really need the NEA.

https://twitter.com/AttorneyLana/status/827533367432323072

Support artists however and whenever you can…  LT

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6 thoughts on “Nazi loot | Art Theft Crackdown | “Cultural Property” | Repatriation

  1. I’ve seen a couple of great movies about art – Woman in Gold is of course about art repatriation. Monuments Men is about a real-life dedicated team during WW2 to preserving\saving works of art. Art is the best of us, and it’s the thing we leave behind, a testament to our culture, so it’s important to protect the art of all cultures, or else we miss out on some very vital part of ourselves.

    Liked by 1 person

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