Australia

NSW state premier made honorary member of Australian committee

New South Wales state premier Kristina Keneally has expressed her support for the return of the Parthenon Marbles

NSW premier supports return of Parthenon Marbles

12/24/2010

Australian politician Kristina Keneally, premier of New South Wales, announced during an event for Greek-Australian media on Sunday that she has become an honorary member of the Australians for the Return of the Parthenon Marbles Committee and supports their return to Greece.

According to the radio station SBS, Keneally said the demand for the marbles return was "fair" and that they would be returning to their "rightful home".

"The government of New South Wales is proud to support this demand for the return of the Marbles to Greece and its people," she said.

Read the original article here.

NSW Arts Minister calls on UK to return the Elgin Marbles

New South Wales Arts Minister, Virginia Judge, has called on the UK to reunite the Parthenon Marbles.

NSW Minister for Arts Calls on British Museum to Return Parthenon Marbles
Posted on 03 December 2010 by Venetia Aftzigianni

“Today I call upon the British Museum to conduct itself as a museum, a contemporary museum, and not as some colonial power clinging to a prized trophy.” said Virginia Judge, Minister for Arts in New South Wales. Her speech was attended by David Hill, the President of the Committee for the Reunification of the Parthenon Marbles. The Minister added: ”I do not ask the British Museum to return a vase or some statue with a missing limb. I ask the British Museum to return half the Parthenon; return it to Greece so that it may be reunited with the rest of itself…If we agree with the Code of Ethics of the International Council of Museums, ownership of material culture, which is the result of a transaction with an occupying force, in itself is questionable and unethical.”. The Australian Minister is a member of the NSW government which has consistently supported Greek efforts to take back the Parthenon Marbles. They are also named Elgin marbles by Lord Elgin. He removed a staggering amount of panels and sculptures, including 247 feet of the Parthenon Frieze.

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Australian government ministers call for the return fo the Parthenon Marbles

Two Australian government ministers have called for the return of the Parthenon Sculptures to Greece.

Ministers lose their marbles

Gemma Jones Political Reporter

July 12, 2010 12:00AM

THE state’s infrastructure is creaking, public transport is overloaded and the hospital system is sick – but two Government ministers seem more interested in 2500-year-old marbles.

Arts Minister Virginia Judge and Local Government Minister Barbara Perry have decided to dabble in foreign affairs by demanding the return of the Elgin Marbles.

The marbles are sculptures and panels that were removed from the ancient Parthenon, in Athens, by Thomas Bruce, the seventh earl of Elgin, in 1801.

Bruce sold them to the British government and Greece has long demanded that the “Parthenon Marbles” – as it prefers to call them – be returned from the British Museum in London, where they now reside.

Ms Judge accused the museum of acting like “some colonial power” and called on Britain to return the sculptures. Ms Perry also waded in and said: “I hope the message from this Parliament will be heard in Britain.”

But in the two weeks since they spoke in Parliament, Britain appears not to have heard their plea.

An international campaign to have Britain return the marbles has been waged for years and both ministers said they had raised the issue on behalf of their thousands of Greek constituents.

“I do not ask the British Museum to return a vase or some statue with a missing limb. I ask it to return half the Parthenon, return it to Greece so it may be reunited with the rest of itself,” Ms Judge told parliament.

“It would be like having the Mona Lisa displayed in the Louvre, in Paris, while her smile is displayed in the National Portrait Gallery in London.”

Ms Judge’s office said support for the return of the sculptures had also been raised in Federal Parliament by a Liberal MP.

A spokeswoman said 3000 Greeks lived in Ms Judge’s electorate of Strathfield and many had asked her to raise their plight in parliament.

“The president of the International Committee for the Parthenon Marbles, David Hills, also asked the Minister to raise the issue and was in Parliament when she made her speech,” she said.

Ms Perry added: “NSW has a very large Greek-Australian population, a lot of whom live in my electorate of Auburn. Many in the local Greek population are rightly concerned about this ongoing international issue. I simply put forward their views.”

Read the original article here.

Manchester conference on Museums and Restitution

Manchester University is organising a conference on Museums and Restitution. One fo the speakers at the conference will be George Vardas from the Australian Committee. The event will also be attended by Fabrizio Micalizzi from the Swiss Committee.

Museums and Restitution – International Conference

Museums and Restitution is a two-day international conference organised by the Centre for Museology and The Manchester Museum at the University of Manchester. The conference examines the issue of restitution in relation to the changing role and authority of the museum, focussing on new ways in which these institutions are addressing the subject.

Restitution is one of the most emotive and complex issues facing the museum world in the twenty first century. Its current high profile reflects changing global power relations and the increasingly vocal criticisms of the historical concentration of the world’s heritage in the museums of the West. The 2002 Declaration of the Importance and Value of Universal Museums, which was signed by the directors of eighteen of the world’s most prominent museums, pushed the subject to the forefront of debate as never before.

Over recent years, the issue of restitution has taken on a new complexion with different processes emerging. We have seen an increasing emphasis on museums working with source communities, and with new forms of restitution other than object restitution – such as visual and knowledge restitution. The language of discussion too has changed, with the term ‘reunification’, for example, rather than ‘repatriation’ now often being used in relation to the Parthenon Marbles. The opening of New Acropolis Museum in Athens in June 2009 has added a further dimension to the debates. We are also seeing new countries gaining increasing prominence in restitution debates: for example, the official response from the government of the People’s Republic of China to the Yves Saint Laurent auction of Chinese looted bronzes at Christie’s in Paris in March 2009. This is a trend clearly set to continue.

This conference will bring together museum professionals and academics from a wide range of fields (including museology, archaeology, anthropology, art history and cultural policy) to share ideas on contemporary approaches to restitution from the viewpoint of museums.

Possible themes

* New museums, new developments

* Visual, knowledge and digital repatriation

* Authority and power: voices listened to, voices heard

* Beyond ownership? Loans, travelling exhibitions, exchanges

* Reflections on returns

*New* Lunch-Time Discussion on Washington Principles on Nazi-Confiscated Art, Prague’s Terezin Declaration and latest legislation. Find out more and get involved.
Confirmed Keynote Speakers

- Tristram Besterman (Former Director, The Manchester Museum. Writer, adviser and mediator on museums and cultural issues)

Title of Keynote: ‘Cultural equity: an ethical paradigm for the sustainable museum’

- Prof. Piotr Bienkowski (Former Deputy Director, The Manchester Museum. Cultural, heritage and museums consultant, writer and researcher and Honorary Professor at the University of Manchester)

Title of Keynote: ‘Authority and the Power of Place: Exploring the Legitimacy of Authorised and Alternative Voices in the Restitution Discourse’

- Maurice Davies (Head of Policy and Communication, Museums Association)
Maurice will lead the onference closing session and discussion on Friday 9th July
Programme Panel

* Dr Sam Alberti, The Manchester Museum / Centre for Museology

* Dr Kostas Arvanitis, Centre for Museology

* Malcolm Chapman, The Manchester Museum

* Dr Zachary Kingdon, National Museums Liverpool

* Dr Helen Rees Leahy, Centre for Museology

* Prof. Sharon Macdonald, Social Anthropology

* Louise Tythacott, Centre for Museology

Registration

Standard Registration Fee: £100 (£50 per day)

Student Registration Fee: £50 (£25 per day)

Please complete the conference booking form and e-mail it as an attachment to:

Hannah Mansell at: Hannah.mansell@manchester.ac.uk

Or post it to:

Hannah Mansell,
Martin Harris Centre,
The University of Manchester,
Oxford Road,
Manchester
M13 9PL
UK.

Tel.: + 44 (0)161 275 3319
*Spaces are limited. Book early to avoid disappointment! – Please register by Monday 7th June 2010*
Key Dates
Call for Papers Deadline: 11th December 2009
Notification of Acceptance: March 2010
Registration Opens: March 2010
Registration Closes: June 2010
Conference Dates: 8-9 July 2010

Read the original announcement here.

Australian politicians supporting the reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures

A number of Australian MPs are campaigning for the reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures in Athens.

AUSTRALIAN POLITICIANS TAKE ACTION ON RETURN OF PARTHENON SCULPTURES

The annual meeting of the World Hellenic Inter-Parliamentary Association (WHIA – Oceania Region) in Perth resolved to increase public awareness of the issue of the return of the Parthenon Sculptures from the British Museum to Greece, said WHIA President, John Pandazopoulos MP.

Mr Pandazopoulos said that the opening of the new Acropolis Museum removes a major obstacle in Britain’s argument that there was no suitable venue to exhibit the famous sculptures.

Australian MP’s of Greek heritage met in the Parliament of Western Australia – Perth on the eve of the Conference of the Australian Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) and were united on this important issue.

The WHIA Oceania region will commence its campaign by taking the opportunity to raise the issue with MP’s from around Australia, who are meeting at the CPA Conference in Perth.

Brochures and representations were made as a prelude to the campaign to engage all Australian MP’s in the ultimate goal of restoring the sculptures to their rightful home, said George Souris MP, the Oceania regional representative attending the Conference in Perth.

The WHIA is also seeking to extend its campaign by raising awareness amongst other Philhellenes within the Australian-Oceania region.

Contact: Hon. John Pandazopoulos, MP. – 0408 310733

Hon. George Souris MP. – 0427 241528

Read the original article here.

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