Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Greece and Italy: co-operation over cultural property

In July 2008 Greece and Italy signed up to co-operate over cultural property (see original story). One of the most visible outcomes was the display of the Nostoi exhibition at the New Acropolis Museum.

I noticed an interesting story on ANSA ("Greece returns looted frescoes", March 23, 2009).
Greece on Monday returned to Italy two medieval frescoes looted from a tomb near Naples in 1982. ...
They originally adorned the walls of one of the famous tufa chambers called Fornelle at Calvi south of Monte Cassino ...

The particularly ornate chamber - many of whose frescoes are still missing - is believed to have been the tomb of 11th-century Count Pandolfo and his wife Countess Gualferada.

Handing over the frescoes, Greek Culture Minister Antoni Samaras said the event marked "another important stage in collaboration with our Italian friends and partners in the fight against art theft".
Where were these pieces found?
The frescoes of two saints were recovered by Greek antiquities police in a raid on Greek art traffickers on the Aegean island of Schinoussa in 2006.
I am aware of a raid on that island in 2006 (see earlier comments and short report in the New York Times). What else will be emerging?

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