Saturday, 8 August 2009

But meanwhile, where oh where has Mr. Barford gone?

"But meanwhile, where oh where has Mr. Barford gone?" asks Missouri portable antiquities dealer Wayne Sayles. Though I see that instead of missing me, Sayles merely demands that I answer some question or other of his. So where have I been? Basically taking a break, leaving my computer at home and driving across half of Europe, in the process doing a (pre)-Romanesque church crawl, exploring twisting medieval side streets of half timbered towns, deploring some modern development of the same, sitting at various foreign tables with my family and museum colleagues and friends enjoying traditional meals from local produce washed down with the local traditional brews, in general, enjoying a bit of cultural heritage. And I did not need to buy a single decontextualised coin or other artefact to do so. I guess that's the difference between us Europeans and Missourians.
Having a look at what's been happening 'on the blogs' while I was away, it seems I have mostly missed some sterile needling of David Gill and more attacks on Robyn by Wayne Sayles and Peter Tompa. Somehow I think getting out and about in the cultural landscape the preferable option.


Museum Security Network said...

I wonder if you realize that Quedlinburg (photo) was the location where a most infamous art theft took place at the end of WW.II. American G.I. stole several objects among which a very valuable mediaeval manuscript. Recoverd in the early nineties.

Ton Cremers

Paul Barford said...

Yes. Lieutenant Joe T. Meador from Texas, taking items from a cache of evacuated objects supposedly under US guard in 1945, which were then sold for more than three million dollars to the "Cultural Foundation of the States". Not the only item that wandered to the US in the aftermath of their foreign wars, is it?

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