Friday, May 30, 2014

A Paestan krater in New York and curatorial responsibilities

Detail of Paestan krater from the Medici Dossier.
The Paestan krater in New York appears to feature in five Polaroid images from the Medici Dossier (and deposits are clearly visible). Dietrich von Bothmer reported that the krater noted the purchase of the krater from a New York auction (in 1989). He took the inscription to be 'Hybron'. The krater was acquired through the "Classical Purchase Fund".

Yet the most recent catalogue suggests that the krater was acquired from "The Bothmer Purchase Fund". The inscription is read (incorrectly) as 'Hybris' (as Tsirogiannis has observed).

This new evidence about the collecting history ("provenance") of the krater needs to be investigated.

I am sure that I do not need to remind the Director of the MMA about the AAMD Guidelines:
If a member museum, as a result of its continuing research, gains information that establishes another party’s right to ownership of a Work, the museum should bring this information to the attention of the party, and if the case warrants, initiate the return of the Work to that party, as has been done in the past. In the event that a third party brings to the attention of a member museum information supporting the party’s claim to a Work, the museum should respond promptly and responsibly and take whatever steps are necessary to address this claim, including, if warranted, returning the Work, as has been done in the past.
A third party, Dr Christos Tsirogannis, has brought "information" to the notice of the MMA supporting "another party's right to ownership of a Work". The MMA now needs to "respond promptly and responsibly" by contacting the Italian authorities. (A Paestan krater is likely to have been found in one of the cemeteries around Paestum.) Will this krater be returned?

I am grateful to Dr Christos Tsirogiannis for his assistance with this post.

Reference
Bothmer, D. von 1988-89. "Greek and Roman art." Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art 119: 28-29.

Bookmark and Share so Your Real Friends Know that You Know

No comments:

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails