|International Museums on High Alert for Looted Ancient Egyptian Artifacts Due to Crisis|
Pro-government demonstrators use a metal sign to shield themselves from thrown rocks as they clash with anti-government demonstrators, unseen,at right, next to the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir square in Cairo, Egypt Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. AP Photo/Ben Curtis.
By: Mohammed Abbas
LONDON (REUTERS).- International museums are on high alert for looted Egyptian artifacts and some archaeologists have even offered to fly to the country to help safeguard its ancient treasures, museums said Wednesday.
Egypt has been rocked by an unprecedented nine days of demonstrations against President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year-rule, and fears are high for the country's priceless heritage after looters broke into the Egyptian Museum in Cairo last week.
The specter of the fall of Baghdad in 2003 looms large in the minds of Egyptologists, when thousands millennia-old artifacts were stolen or smashed by looters in the chaos following the fall of Saddam Hussein.
"The situation during the fall of Baghdad is the worst case scenario, but we think that's not going to happen because there is such a movement to protect the antiquities," said Karen Exell, chairwoman of Britain's Egypt Exploration Society and curator of the Egypt collection at the Manchester Museum.
Egyptologists have been heartened by the reaction of ordinary Egyptians to chaos and lawlessness.
In Cairo hundreds of people formed a chain around the museum to protect it after looters broke into the museum Friday and destroyed two Pharaonic mummies, officials said.
Western museums are still urging vigilance.
"All of us who are friends of Egypt can help the efforts to stop looting of archaeological sites, stores and museums, by focusing on the international antiquities trade," London's Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology said in a statement.
Exell said an international alert had gone out to watch for looted items, as well as offers of help. One had been posted on a global Egyptologist electronic bulletin board by a team of Spanish archaeologists, offering to help catalog artifacts.
Egypt is home to one of the world's greatest ancient civilizations, which is also a major source of tourist income.
The British Museum, home to one of the world's top collections of Egyptian antiquities, including the famed Rosetta Stone, called for more protection of the country's heritage.
"It is a matter of the greatest concern that these irreplaceable objects should be fully protected to ensure their safety and survival for future generations," the museum said.
Many key ancient Egyptian works were allowed to leave the country in previous centuries and are stored in international museums. Some critics say this is because authorities did not recognize their true value when they were unearthed.
Exell said this is not the case now.
"It's been really heartening that ordinary people are protecting sites closest to them, they understand their value ... People do feel very proud of their heritage."
(Editing by Jon Hemming)
February 3, 2011
Art Historian Silvano Vinceti Claims Male Model Behind Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa
National Gallery Presents Historical and Scientific Studies on Degas Sculpture Collection
Israeli Archaeologists Find a 1,500-Year-Old Byzantine Church Southwest of Jerusalem
INAH Researchers Find 8 Camps Occupied by Nomadic Groups, Some of Them, 8,000 Years Ago
Art Institute Presents Works by Celebrated Swiss Contemporary Artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss
With Financial Crisis a Distant Memory and as Art Market Booms, Some See the Risk of Bust
Historic, Three-Year Preservation Project Restores The Landmark Façade of the Library On 42nd Street
Auschwitz Decays Due to Age and Mass Tourism, Prompting Preservation Effort
Mid-Career Overview of Vicky Civera's Work at the Valencian Institute of Modern Art
Anri Sala's First Solo Exhibition in Canada Opens at the Musée d'art Contemporain de Montreal
Solo Exhibition of New Paintings and Works on Paper by Robert Zandvliet at Peter Blum Gallery
World's First Museum Exhibit Dedicated to Women Who Rock Opens at the Rock Hall this Spring
Exhibition of Polish Design 1955-1968 from the Collection of the National Museum in Warsaw
First U.S. Solo Museum Show of Gabriel Kuri at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston
Collection of Contemporary Bengali Scrolls Leave Liverpool to Tell Tales from India
John Miller Awarded the Wolfgang Hahn Prize
Posing Beauty: African-American Images from the 1890s to the Present at Newark Museum
Generali Foundation Presents "unExhibit", an Exhibition by International Artists
Homage to Yosl Bergner: Illustrations to Franz Kafka's Oeuvre at Tal Aviv Museum of Art
University of Pennsylvania Museum Removes Mummies After China Objects
Hungarian Revolutionary Posters and Plywood Featured in New Exhibitions at MoMA
Dual Exhibitions Present Changes in Urban Life and Photography Over the Last 60 Years
International Museums on High Alert for Looted Ancient Egyptian Artifacts Due to Crisis
Ryan O'Neal Donates Farrah Fawcett's Red Swimsuit to Museum of American History
Ten Museums in Running for £100,000 "Museum of the Year" Art Fund Prize 2011
Leading Contemporary Figurative Painter John Wonnacott Exhibits at Agnew's
Studio Museum Launches Two New Initiatives: Studio (un)framed and Studio Lab
First "Bat-man" Comic Proof Pages, Saved from the Trash in Queens, Highlight Comics Event at Heritage Auctions
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- Mystery over massive Alexander the Great-era tomb unearthed in northern Greece
2.- An ancient money box containing a large rare hoard of coins found in Israel
3.- Robin Williams' portrait installed today at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington
4.- The Baltimore Museum of Art announces three new contemporary exhibitions in fall
5.- New Aspen Art Museum designed by architect Shigeru Ban opens to the public
6.- New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art launches 82nd & Fifth app in 12 languages
7.- MoMA online-only publication features new research on Pablo Picasso and Cubism
8.- Volunteers needed for massive Smithsonian digitization project
9.- Tate Britain welcomes home John Everett Millais's Ophelia and Rossettis The Beloved
10.- Bogart estate: Hollywood golden age icon Lauren Bacall dead at 89 in New York
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|