Tuesday 10 April 2012

What do they Know in St Louis?

It would appear that the journalists at Stltoday.com are not terribly clear on the difference between right and wrong:
For the time being, and perhaps permanently, the funeral mask of Ka-Nefer-Nefer remains the property of the St. Louis Art Museum. It's not entirely clear whether this is a good thing or not. [...] The government of Egypt, which lost track of the mask in 1973, wants it back.
Nobody "lost track of it", whether U.S. District Court Judge Henry E. Autrey and St Louis Today's editors accepts that or not, most of the rest of us are convinced that SLAM is claiming Egypt's property as its own.

At first I was miffed that these guys had pinched my artwork - the satirical bumper sticker - without acknowledgement. Then I understood, these journalist think there really IS a "Malibu, CA chapter" of an organization called the "Association for Museum Professional Excellence". Sadly, although it seems they could manage to 'research' this issue by looking on my blog, they could not manage to make much of an  attempt to track down any information about this organization. I guess they do not do satire in St Louis.

 This of course may be part of the problem, I am among those who have assumed up to now that the good people of St Louis understand what is going on. It would seem that if they are being guided by such misled media as the guys who wrote this article, then there's precious little hope of that. Look at this bit:
But under international patrimony laws that existed in 1973, when Egypt discovered that the mask of Ka-Nefer-Nefer was missing, the Art Museum here seems to have a solid claim of ownership. "The museum believes it holds these objects in trust," said David Linenbroker, the museum's attorney. "The museum can't just turn it over."
Well, yes it can, and should. And an informed public should be making sure it does not use them as their alibi. The people of St Louis may not however be being informed, as much as 'led by the nose' by those supporting the rapacious city fathers who are so desperate to hold onto this object. What's that about "But under international patrimony laws that existed in 1973, when Egypt discovered that the mask of Ka-Nefer-Nefer was missing"? Who wrote this nonsense, why did they not have the guts to sign it, and one might also ask what connections they might have with SLAM's Trustees? 

Anon, 'Editorial: The not-so-clear case of the missing mummy mask', St Louis Today, (the Platform), April 10, 2012

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