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Article

Sarah E. Fraser

[Chang Ta-ch’ienChang Dai–chienzhaihao Dafengtang]

(b Neijiang, Sichuan Province, May 10, 1899; d Taipei, Apr 2, 1983).

Chinese painter, calligrapher, collector, and accomplished forger. Born Zhang Zhengquan, he was from an artistic family and began to paint under the tutelage of his mother, Zeng Youzhen (1860–1936). In 1917, after passing through Shanghai, he joined his elder brother Zhang Shanzi (1882–1940) in Kyoto, where he learned textile dyeing and weaving.

In 1919 Zhang returned to Shanghai and studied with the calligrapher Zeng Xi (1861–1930), who gave him the name Zhang Yuan, as well as with the painter Li Ruiqing (1867–1920), a specialist in Shitao-style landscapes (1642–1707). Both are credited with cultivating Zhang’s distinctive calligraphic hand. Zhang’s intentionally splayed characters, combined with awkward elements such as leans in unexpected directions, have origins in antiquarian studies (jinshi xue), an element central to Zeng and Li’s practice. Li deployed a seal script (zhuanshu) based on bronzes and stone stele. In December ...

Article

Patty Gerstenblith

Process by which a museum removes an object from its collection. Many of the major European museums such as those in the UK and France are prohibited by national legislation from removing works of art from their collections. However, in rare circumstances, specific statutes permit such removal, for example in the UK with respect to art works stolen during the Holocaust. In contrast to their European counterparts, museums in the United States are legally free to remove works of art from their collections for purposes of sale or other reasons. While state statutes may in rare circumstances restrict alienability, the only general exception is if a donor has imposed a legally enforceable restraint on alienation—that is, the transfer of ownership. However, the codes of ethics and voluntary guidelines of the two major museum associations, the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) and the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), restrict what a museum can do with the proceeds from the sale of a deaccessioned artwork. The AAMD restricts the use of proceeds to the acquisition of substitute works of art, while the AAM policy allows proceeds to be used for acquisitions and direct care of collections. The penalties for violating these guidelines range from censure to loss of accreditation. Yet, in light of the coronavirus epidemic, these associations have changed their guidelines, thereby casting doubt on the policy basis for these restrictions....

Article

Noémie Goldman and Kim Oosterlinck

Term for the return of lost or looted cultural objects to their country of origin, former owners, or their heirs. The loss of the object may happen in a variety of contexts (armed conflicts, war, colonialism, imperialism, or genocide), and the nature of the looted cultural objects may also vary, ranging from artworks, such as paintings and sculptures, to human remains, books, manuscripts, and religious artefacts. An essential part of the process of restitution is the seemingly unavoidable conflict around the transfer of the objects in question from the current to the former owners. Ownership disputes of this nature raise legal, ethical, and diplomatic issues. The heightened tensions in the process arise because the looting of cultural objects challenges, if not breaks down, relationships between peoples, territories, cultures, and heritages.

The history of plundering and art imperialism may be traced back to ancient times. Looting has been documented in many instances from the sack by the Romans of the Etruscan city of Veii in ...