But Cuno stresses that he will support the Getty's current antiquities acquisition policy, designed to deter looting: "The policy is to only acquire objects that can be shown to have left their presumed country of origin before 1970."The key issue is that collecting histories need to be demonstrated through authenticated documentation.
"It's the right thing for the Getty, not only because the Getty has had complicated relationships with foreign governments in the past but because the Getty is more than a museum," he says. "The conservation work and foundation work that we do internationally can't be compromised."
We look forward to reading his Rice University Campbell Lectures that will appear as Museums Matter: In Praise of the Encyclopedic Museum (Chicago UP) [website] this December. Previous titles have posed questions: Whose Muse?; Who Owns Antiquity?; Whose Culture? Is the new title a break with precedent and perhaps more than a little suggestive?