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Greece to seek international help to recover the Elgin Marbles

Plus: Van Gogh Museum to offer consultation services | All change at Santa Monica Museum of Art | recommended reading: auction fever in New York

9 May 2016

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Greece may seek international help to reclaim Elgin Marbles | The Greek culture minister Aristides Baltas has suggested that the country’s government may seek the aid of an international body to recover the Elgin Marbles from the British Museum. According to the Guardian, Greece is ‘forging alliances, which it hopes will ultimately win the support of an organisation like the United Nations. ‘If the UN represents all nations of the world and all nations of the world say “the marbles should be returned” then we’ll go to court because the British Museum would be against humanity,’ Mr Baltas said. His words come as pro-repatriation activists prepare to mark the 200th anniversary of the marbles’ transportation to London.

Van Gogh Museum to offer consultation services | To boost revenue, Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum has initiated a programme that will see it offer its professional advice to ‘collectors, corporations and other institutions’, reports the New York Times. Adriaan Dönszelmann, the museum’s managing director, has downplayed suggestions that its curatorial integrity might be affected by offering private consultation. He expects the venture to generate up to 5 per cent of the museum’s annual operating budget.

All change at Santa Monica Museum of Art | Following the closure of its Bergamot Station premises last year, the Santa Monica Museum of Art has confirmed that major changes are on the way. On Friday, museum officials announced that the institution is to relocate to downtown Los Angeles, and will henceforth be known as the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA). The rebranded museum’s new home will be a 12,700 sq ft former garment factory on East 7th St. If all goes to plan, the new-look institution will open next spring.

Recommended reading: auction fever in New York | As auction season hits New York, The Art Newspaper reports on the results of yesterday’s sales at Christie’s and Phillips, while the New York Times assesses what to expect over the course of ‘Gigaweek’. Meanwhile in the Observer, Sean O’Hagan speaks to Wolfgang Tillmans about his series of posters designed to encourage a ‘remain’ vote in the UK’s upcoming referendum on EU membership. ‘The debate is being fought on peripheral subjects that have been made to seem central,’ says Tillmans, who describes himself as a ‘product of European reconciliation and cultural exchange’.

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