The International Association for the Reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures is an association of various national committees with the shared goal of "The reunification of all the surviving Parthenon Sculptures in the New Acropolis Museum in Athens"
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Dimitrios Pantermalis, the director of the New Acropolis Museum talks about the building

Dimitrios Pantermalis gave a talk at the National Gallery of Art in Washington on the New Acropolis Museum.

The New Acropolis Museum: A Conversation with Dimitrios Pandermalis

Dimitrios Pandermalis, president of the board of directors, Acropolis Museum, and professor of archaeology, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, in conversation with Selma Holo, professor of art history, director of the International Museum Institute, and director of the Fisher Museum of Art, University of Southern California, and Faya Causey, head of academic programs, National Gallery of Art.

Professor Dimitrios Pandermalis provides an overview of the construction of the new Acropolis Museum in this podcast recorded on October 17, 2010. Designed by Bernard Tschumi and completed in 2009, the 262,000-square-foot museum rises at the foot of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece. This lecture reveals the challenges and responsibilities of creating a modern building atop sensitive archaeological excavations, within the Athens city grid, facing the Parthenon—one of the most influential buildings in Western civilization—and housing ancient sculptures and decorative arts excavated from the Acropolis. This lecture was coordinated with and supported by the American Friends of the Acropolis Museum and the Embassy of Greece in Washington, DC.

Read the original article here or download a podcast of the whole lecture here.

New video about the Parthenon Marbles from the American Committee for the Reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures

The American Committee for the Reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures have created a video about their campaign for the return of the Parthenon Sculptures called All sides of the Parthenon.

You can view the video online here.

Award for best worldwide tourism project in 2010 goes to the New Acropolis Museum

The New Acropolis Museum has been awarded Best Worldwide Tourism project for 2010 by the British Guild of Travel Writers.

New Acropolis Museum wins prestigious award

8 Nov 2010

The New Acropolis Museum in Athens has won the     ‘ (BGTW) prestigious global award for the Best Worldwide Tourism Project for 2010.

The prize was presented to deputy culture and tourism minister Yiorgos Nikitiadis, representing the Greek government, during a ceremony on Sunday night in London.

Nikitiadis thanked the organisers and the voting travel writers, noting that this distinction has opened the door for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to their homeland. (ANA)

Read the original article here.

Callimachus victory Monument goes on display in New Acropolis Museum

After a lengthy reconstruction process, a newly restored monument to the victory of Callimachus has gone on display in the New Acropolis Museum.

Nike Monument unveiled at new Acropolis Museum

10/27/2010

ΑΝΑ-ΜPΑ/The Nike Monument erected in honour of the ancient military commander Callimachus after the Battle of Marathon, its various surviving shards reassembled for the first time to resemble the form they would have had in antiquity, was unveiled in the new Acropolis Museum on Tuesday by Culture and Tourism Minister Pavlos Geroulanos.

In statements at the unveiling, Geroulanos emphasised the importance of the monument 2,500 years after the historic battle, an event broadly regarded as a pivotal moment in the history of European culture.

In 490 B.C. when the Battle of Marathon took place Callimachus was then a ‘polemarch’ or supreme military commander of Athens. With the 10 Athenian generals evenly divided over whether to do battle or surrender to the Persian invasion force, it was he that cast the deciding vote that sent the Athenians into battle and on to their final victory over the Persian Empire.

“Everything now rests of you,” Geroulanos said, quoting directly from the description given by the ancient historian Herodotus of a hypothetical conversation between Callimachus and Miltiades – the general that led the battle and earned Greeks their victory – just before the polemarch cast his vote.

“Today we are not unveiling the monument of just another general but a monument to a democratic process that changed the course of history,” the minister stressed.

Callimachus took part in the battle himself, leading the right wing of the Greek army, but was killed during the fighting. His statue was erected atop of the Athens Acropolis.

According to Prof. Dimitris Pantermalis, the curator of the new Acropolis Museum, the monument has been reconstructed in a modern fashion, using only the original shards in their correct positions, so that a visitor might be able to see the authentic version.

The remnants of the 4.68-metre monument have been affixed to a metal column that holds the various parts in place and is built so that additional fragments might be attached if they are found. It is on display in the museum’s Archaic Monuments’ section.

A short distance from the original there also stands a copy showing archaeologists’ best estimate of what the monument might have looked like when it was whole.

The unveiling of the Nike monument was among a series of events scheduled by the culture and tourism ministry to celebrate the 2,500th anniversary since the Battle of Marathon, which will culminate in the holding of the 28th Classic Athens Marathon on Sunday, in which more than 20,000 athletes from all over the world will take part.

Read the original article here.

Who owns culture - debate at the Battle of Ideas

Geoff White from the Marbles Reunited campaign is speaking at the Battle of Ideas - a series of debates in London organised by the Institute of Ideas. The discussion he is participating in is on the subject of "Who owns culture".

Losing our marbles? Who owns culture?

Sunday 31 October, 12.30pm until 1.30pm, Courtyard Gallery Battle for the Past

The ownership of the Parthenon Marbles has been disputed since their removal from Athens in the early 19th century, by Lord Elgin. Some argue the sculptures belong in Greece, where they were carved almost two and a half thousand years go. Advocates of repatriation insist that the marbles are part of the heritage of Greece, and should never have been taken in the first place. Others feel that the marbles are now part of the history of the British Museum, and point out that in their current Bloomsbury home they can be seen in relation to other cultures, as part of world history. But with the opening of the new Acropolis Museum in Athens, a state-of-the-art centre, claims for their return are growing stronger.

The marbles are not the only cultural artefact under dispute. Egypt’s chief archaeologist Zahi Hawass has demanded the return of the Nefertiti bust from the Neues Museum in Berlin, and secured the return of fresco fragments from the Louvre. Supporters of repatriation claims point to the dubious manner in which Western museums acquired their collections, often through colonial looting. Critics counter that for ancient artefacts there can be no such thing as a ‘rightful’ owner: the modern Greek and Egyptian states, for example, are vastly different from those that ruled when the artefacts were excavated, let alone the empires of Ancient Greece or Egypt. Moreover, it is suggested that the insistence of seeing artefacts in their original context undermines the very idea of a museum, which involves a necessary separation from context in the service of a universalist view based on knowledge and imagination. But those in favour of repatration argue the idea that Western museums are ‘universal’ is clearly self-serving, and suggest instead that returning such ill-gotten gains would be a progressive step to healing the wounds of the past.

What effects do repatriation claims have on modern archaeology and scholarship? Can political grievances be overcome through the diplomatic use of cultural artefacts? Does the universal museum exist, even as an ideal, or should we respect local and national identities? Where do the Parthenon Marbles rightfully belong and, more importantly, who owns culture?

Speakers

Dr Tiffany Jenkins

arts and society director, Institute of Ideas; sociologist; cultural commentator; author, Contesting Human Remains in Museum Collections: the crisis of cultural authority

Dr Paul Thompson

rector and vice-provost, Royal College of Art

Karl-Erik Norrman

founder and secretary-general, European Cultural Parliament; former Swedish ambassador; author, The Meaning of Life? Football’s role in the world and The Crisis of Democracy

Geoffrey White

retired barrister; founder member, Marbles Reunited

Chair:

Pauline Hadaway

director, Belfast Exposed, gallery of contemporary photography and photography resource; convenor, Belfast Salon

Produced by

Dr Tiffany Jenkins arts and society director, Institute of Ideas; sociologist; cultural commentator; author, Contesting Human Remains in Museum Collections: the crisis of cultural authority

Recommended readings

Contesting Human Remains in Museum Collections: The Crisis of Cultural Authority

Since the late 1970s human remains in museum collections have been subject to claims and controversies, such as demands for repatriation by indigenous groups who suffered under colonization. These requests have been strongly contested by scientists who research the material and consider it unique evidence.

Tiffany Jenkins, Routledge, 23 October 2010

A banana republic police HQ maybe, but not a home for the Elgin marbles

I am a restitutionist – but the new museum fails to clinch the case. It is not so much an argument as a punch in the face.

Simon Jenkins, Guardian Comment is free, 22 October 2009

Roman art thieves

Was art in ancient times always plundered art?

Mary Beard, Times Literary Supplement, 30 September 2009

A Home for the Marbles

How long can the British authorities cling jealously to the loot of their former ambassador to a long-vanished Turkish empire?

Christopher Hitchens, New York Times, 19 June 2009

Right the wrongs of ill-gotten gains

The Chinese person seeking to retrieve plundered treasures by bidding for them in an auction was making an important point

Leo Hickman, Guardian Comment is free, 4 March 2009

Is it time to start talking about the Parthenon marbles again?

For the first time two prominent staff members of the British Museum have participated in a major cultural event in Greece

Helena Smith, Guardian Art & Design blog, 21 March 2008

Enlightenment museums: universal or merely global?

[Although] a universal museum could be invaluable in a world full of conflict and misunderstanding, the credibility of the idea is undermined by its being deployed chiefly as a defense against repatriation claims.

Mark O’Neill, museum and society, November 2004

Read the original article here.