Art of the steal: European museums wrestle with returning African art

May 1, 2019 by

But his pride was quickly stifled by another emotion: loss. Most Nigerians, he knew, would never have the resources to stand where he did and look at their own history.

By Kristen Chick Correspondent, Ryan Lenora Brown Staff writer

Who should be the caretaker of Africa’s cultural heritage – the Africans who created it or the Europeans in whose museums it has long been displaced? For decades, art experts and politicians have debated the morality and practicality of returning art. But a report commissioned by French President Emmanuel Macron, which recommended returning art taken during the colonial period, has injected a sense of urgency.

Today, some of the Benin bronzes may be on their way home – temporarily – through a program to return items on loan. But whether that is a road map or a cautionary tale depends on whom you ask.

Source: Art of the steal: European museums wrestle with returning African art – CSMonitor.com

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