Friday 19 November 2010

Are Gill and Barford Interested in Icon Sales?

Peter Tompa apparently has a problem with icon auctions. Discussing an upcoming one on Cyprus he audaciously asks:
Will cultural property watchdogs Gill and Barford get on the case? Or, will they let the matter go because the auctioneer apparently has good relations with Saving Antiquities for Everyone? See
I consider that insulting. I am not a US congressman whose opinions can be bought so easily. I support SAFE wholeheartedly but if I think it is doing something wrong, I say so. I wonder if one could say the same about "Cultural property Observer" and the coin dealers he works for or the ACCG? Could he bring himself to criticise the cowboys?

Sixteenth to nineteenth century icon sales are a bit outside the scope of interest of both my and David Gill's blog. I am not quite sure either where Tompa sees a corrupt relationship between SAFE and Maria Paphiti. Odd.

: Now I see that the persistent Mr Tompa has added:
Addendum: Mr. Barford has responded claiming his blog is not interested in icons: But see
What I said was that icons are outside the scope of this blog which is of course about portable ANTIQUITIES collecting, not collecting paintings. Tompa suggested I would not be blogging about this icon sale, because of some imagined "good relations" between its organizer and SAFE. The reader will note that I queried his grounds for such an accusation and it is no surprise to anyone that he has failed to answer that challenge.

Anyhow, here's a Cyprus icon story for Mr Tompa. Let us see Cultural property Observer join me in hoping that the wish of the Church of Cyprus is fulfilled:
"We ask from those who have in their possession ancient, important religious artefacts from the occupied Cyprus, and probably misled by dealers to buy them, to respect our religious heritage and offer them back to their legitimate owner, the Church of Cyprus".
given that he represents dealers desirous of selling Cypriot antiquities without all that bothersome paperwork, will he do that sincerely?

Vignette: Rublev's Holy Trinity (the Hospitality of Abraham) one of my favourite icons.


David Gill said...

Can I answer your question? Not particularly.
Best wishes

Paul Barford said...

If they were being dug out of the archaeological record of Greece, Russia or Cyprus, then maybe I might take a closer interest , but then if that were the case, they'd hardly be in a condition worthy of sale...

One wonders when (if) Tompa's discussion of the issues will ever proceed beyond the stage of puerile sniping at selected source countries, institutions or people.

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