Notice to Readers

July 15, 2014


As of July 15, 2014 this site will no longer be updated.  However, the content will remain posted for your educational reference.  Thank you!

Posted in: Archaeology Law

Archaeolaw Book Club: The Goldfinch

February 19, 2014


OK, there isn’t really an Archaeolaw book club (unless enough of you harass me to start one!) But, if there was, then I’d put this book next on the reading list. I haven’t read it yet, but since I’ve got so many books in rotation it takes me about six months to get through anything […]

Posted in: Art Heists, Art Law, Books

Pics of the Lovely Monte Albán (Oaxaca, Mexico)

February 5, 2014


On a recent trip to Mexico, I had the good fortune of visiting Monte Albán, a large pre-Columbian archaeological site near Oaxaca central. Monte Albán was founded in the 5th century BC, and was a pre-eminent Zapotec socio-political and economic center for close to a thousand years. Here are a few pictures that I took, although […]

An ad-hoc International Art Crime Tribunal to resolve the fate of the Munich Gurlitt pictures?

November 21, 2013


My friend and associate Judge Arthur Tompkins of New Zealand sent me the following open letter which he has written in regard to the trove of art recovered from a Munich resident, reported on in Archaeolaw here: 80-Year-Old Munich Man with Confiscated Trove of Nazi-Looted Art Breaks Silence   Open Letter to Chancellor Angela Merkel: […]

80-Year-Old Munich Man with Confiscated Trove of Nazi-Looted Art Breaks Silence

November 20, 2013


An 80-year-old Munich man inherited upwards of a thousand pieces of artwork from his father, and 500 of the works are suspected to include pieces taken from Jews during the Nazi regime. During the war, Cornelius Gurlitt’s father was one of the four major art dealers for Hitler himself. The German government confiscated the trove […]

Hit ‘Em Where it Hurts: Trend of Increased Penalties for Antiquities Smuggling Continues

November 13, 2013


Azerbaijan has increased their protection of cultural property by way of increased penalties for illegal exporting of protected cultural materials. Azernews explains: According to the changes, illegal export of Azerbaijani cultural heritage samples included in the list of cultural values will be punishable by a fine worth 1,500 manats for individuals, 3,000 manats for officials […]

Nicholas Cage on the Hot Seat for Smuggled T-Rex Fossil?

November 6, 2013


In 2007, Nicholas Cage outbid fellow actor Leonardo Dicaprio for a 67-million-year-old skull of a Tyrannosaurus bataar, a close relative of the T. rex, paying $US276,000 for what he called “a ferocious-looking addition to his fossil collection.” Now, this fossil may be one of those that Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) aims to seize as […]

Detroit Aims to Protect Art from Bankruptcy

October 30, 2013


As part of Detroit’s bankruptcy, Christie’s is currently assessing the collection at the Detroit Institute of Arts (“DIA”). In response, museum officials are taking steps in order to safeguard future donations to the museum. As DIA director Graham Beal explains, selling off pieces from the institute’s collection in order to cover the city’s debts “would […]

Posted in: Uncategorized

Costa Rican Archaeologist with Dodgy History Acquitted of Smuggling

October 24, 2013


Costa Rican citizen and Munich resident Leonard Patterson has been acquitted of charges of attempting to smuggle 1,400 pieces of pre-Columbian art from Spain to Germany. The Latin-American Herald Tribune report is reproduced below, although the Spanish website El Universal has a much more detailed (and interesting) version of the story. Of particular interest are […]

More Charges Possible in Knoedler Case

October 23, 2013


Last September, the Manhattan US Attorney’s Office asked the judge presiding over several cases against the Knoedler Gallery, former director Ann Freedman, and art dealer Glafira Rosales, to pause the proceedings until December. The Attorneys asked for the pause due to possible further criminal charges. Currently, the only criminal charges in the case have been […]

Posted in: Uncategorized