Monday, October 05, 2015

Boston MFA pulls bust out of storage to honor slain Palmyra director

Though it would be too painful to contemplate putting this particular piece in circulation at this time, here's an example of the level of quality of objects in museum storerooms that might be used in an antiquities-leasing program to steer collectors towards "renting" and away from buying looted artifacts on the illicit market:

This is not the only Palmyran sculpture on display in this part of the world. Other first-rate examples can be seen both at the MFA and in museums such as the recently renovated Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford. But with its fine carving articulating the woman’s “wet drapery” garment and exquisitely pleated headwear, her perfectly parted wavy hair, and her Hellenistic features, it’s both beautiful and characteristic, and it hasn’t been on display in a generation.

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