Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Bronze Herakles to return to Pesaro

In 1964 a bronze Herakles, dating to the 6th or 5th centuries BC, was stolen from the museum in Pesaro ("US returns stolen artwork 'The Holy Trinity Appearing to Saint Clement' to Italy", ArtNews 25 February 2015). It is reported to have been seized from a Manhattan auction-house by the FBI.

The FBI website informs us:
The Statuette was reported stolen from the Oliveriano Archeological Museum in Pesaro, Italy, in January 1964 along with several other items, including ivory tablets of the 9th and 13th centuries, early Christian glass artifacts from the Catacombs of Rome, and Italic and Roman statuettes. After its theft from the museum, the Statuette passed through several hands, and was eventually discovered by Italian and U.S. authorities when it was offered for sale by an auction house in Manhattan. After being provided with evidence that the Statuette was the same piece stolen from the museum, the consignor agreed to the FBI’s seizure of the Statuette for repatriation to Italy. The United States Attorney’s Office submitted a proposed stipulation and order providing for the Statuette’s seizure and return, and the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York entered that order on October 2, 2014.
It would be interesting to learn the full collecting history between 1964 and 2014.

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