Skip to main content

Egyptian antiquities from a family collection ...

A former museum director was charged earlier this week with trying to sell Egyptian antiquities apparently removed from Long Island University's art museum (Kieran Crowley and Kati Cornell, "'Thief' squawks like an Egyptian", The New York Post September 17, 2009)

Barry Stern is alleged to have sold nine Egyptian antiquities through Christie's in New York, Rockefeller Plaza, for some $51,500. Some of the lots can be identified in the catalogue:


December 9, 2008
  • Lot 8: AN EGYPTIAN LIMESTONE SHABTI FOR MONTEMHET. $12,500. "Property from the collection of Barry Stern". Provenance: "Acquired by the current owner's parents, circa 1955."
  • Lot 27: AN EGYPTIAN WOOD PTAH-SOKER-OSIRIS. $8,125. "Property from the collection of Barry Stern". Provenance: "Acquired by the current owner's parents, circa 1955."
  • Lot 33: AN EGYPTIAN BRONZE IMHOTEP. $9,375. "Property from the collection of Barry Stern". Provenance: "Acquired by the current owner's parents, circa 1955."
  • Lot 36: AN EGYPTIAN LIMESTONE HEAD OF AN OFFICIAL. $3,500. "Property from the collection of Barry Stern". Provenance: "Acquired by the current owner's parents, circa 1955."
  • Lot 40: AN EGYPTIAN BRONZE APIS BULL. $10,625. "Property from the collection of Barry Stern". Provenance: "Acquired by the current owner's parents, circa 1955."
June 3, 2009
  • Lot 16: An Egyptian bronze Osiris. $5,250. "Property from the collection of Barry Stern". Provenance: "Acquired by the current owner's parents, circa 1955."

A fuller discussion can be found in a report by Kati Cornell and Joe Mollica, "LI's Pharaoh 'Phraudster' - ex-museum big nailed in Egypt-art theft", The New York Post September 16, 2009. The pieces were apparently donated to the museum in 2002.


Bookmark and Share so Your Real Friends Know that You Know

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Codename: Ainsbrook

I have been watching (UK) Channel 4's Time Team this evening. The programme looked at an undisclosed field (under a potato crop) where a Viking burial had been found. The location in Yorkshire was so sensitive that it was given a codename: Ainsbrook. Here is the summary:
In late 2003 two metal detectorists were working in a field in Yorkshire. They found 'treasure' buried just beneath the surface – a collection of Viking material next to a body. Although they had been detecting on the site for a number of years, during which time they had made large numbers of finds, nothing they had uncovered previously compared with this. They decided to share their discovery with archaeologists.The programme explored the tension between metal-detectorists and the English Heritage sponsored archaeologists putting six trenches into the field based on a geo-physical survey. Finds made by the metal-detectorists did not easily map onto the archaeological features.

Part of the programme had an …

The scale of the returns to Italy

I have been busy working on an overview, "Returning Archaeological Objects to Italy". The scale of the returns to Italy from North American collections and galleries is staggering: in excess of 350 objects. This is clearly the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the material that has surfaced on the market without a history that can be traced back to the period before 1970. 

I will provide more information in due course, but the researcher is a reminder that we need to take due diligence seriously when it comes to making acquisitions.

Stele returns to Greece

The Hellenic Ministry of Culture has announced (Saturday 8 September 2018) that a stele that had been due to be auctioned at Sotheby's in London in June 2017 has been returned to Greece (Friday 7 September 2018). The identification had been made by Cambridge-based forensic archaeologist Dr Christos Tsirogiannis.

It appeared that the stele had been supplied with a falsified history as its presence with Becchina until 1990 contradicted the published sale catalogue entry. It then moved into the hands of George Ortiz.

A year ago it was suggested that Sotheby's should contact the Greek authorities. Those negotiations appear to have concluded successfully.

The 4th century BC stele fragment, with the personal name, Hestiaios, will be displayed in the Epigraphic Museum in Athens. It appears to have come from a cemetery in Attica.