Man repatriates 19 antiquities after reading Guardian article

This article was first published by The Guardian

An American man has returned 19 antiquities to the four countries they came from after reading reports in the Guardian about the repatriation of looted antiquities.

John Gomperts, who lives in Washington, realised that the ancient pieces worth up to £80,000 – including two seventh- and eighth-century BC Cypriot vases – that he had inherited from his grandmother could have come from illicit excavations because they have no collecting history.

He wanted to do the right thing legally and ethically by returning the items to Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Pakistan respectively. After an agreement with his two siblings, he has returned them.

He said: “It seemed like the right thing to do … I read stories on repatriation and I thought: we have these pieces that are 2,500 years old from other countries; we should explore whether we can give them back.”

But with no idea how to repatriate antiquities, he was initially worried that he could be in trouble with the authorities for having potentially looted the artefacts in his possession.

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The next Heritage in Crisis talk - focusing in on decolonisation, Ukraine and Russia - is scheduled for 30 November, 12.30-13.30 (UK time).

To book, visit: https://uk.icom.museum/icom-uk-heritage-in-crisis-decolonising-ukrainian-cultural-heritage/

A new report from ArtFund, Museum X and Culture& sheds light on the impact of ethnic diversity initiatives on curatorial roles in the UK arts & heritage sector
1998-2021.

https://bibli.artfund.org/m/53e933cf196387c3/original/Art-Fund-Curatorial-Diversity-report.pdf?_ga=2.177259809.528651887.1668422001-1916952378.1664185819

The next Heritage in Crisis talk - focusing in on decolonisation, Ukraine and Russia - is scheduled for 30 November, 12.30-13.30 (UK time).

To book, visit: https://uk.icom.museum/icom-uk-heritage-in-crisis-decolonising-ukrainian-cultural-heritage/