05:05:2008 - 18:05 EEST
Jan 25 2008
“History lost” in Lisbon
Γράφει ο/η Θεόφιλος Δουμάνης   
The Hellenic Foundation for Culture will present a multimedia exhibition entitled ‘History Lost’ (produced by Anemon Productions) in the National Museum of Archaeology, Lisbon. The subject of it is the illicit antiquities trade and the impact of antiquities theft on culture. The Portuguese capital is the second port of call after Trieste on the route of this travelling exhibition, which is organised by the Hellenic Foundation for Culture in the context of Greece’s efforts to secure the repatriation of illegally exported ancient artifacts. It will be inaugurated in the National Museum of Archaeology, Lisbon, on 31 January 2008, and has been enriched by copies of finds that have been returned – after the relevant requests – to Greece and Cyprus in recent years (the Aidonia Treasure, a marble head of Dionysos from Corinth, the Kanakaria mosaics from Cyprus, and others). Professor Lord Renfrew will give a lecture on “The illicit trade of antiquities in the world” (February 1, National Museum of Ancient Art, 18:00). 

The exhibition takes visitors on a journey from the looting of the archaeological museum in Baghdad and the smashing of statues in temples in Cambodia, to the sale of stolen antiquities from Mediterranean countries to auction houses in the USA. Its aim is to demonstrate that an ancient artifact divorced from information about the place it was created and used is useless to our knowledge of history. Examples from Greece, Cyprus, Italy and Turkey, countries that have in recent years successfully sought the return of antiquities that had been removed and illegally sold abroad, are included in the exhibition. The subject is presented in Portuguese and English and accompanied by documentary videos and interactive games on the theme of antiquities theft.

It has proved possible to mount the exhibition ‘History Lost’ in the Portuguese capital thanks to collaboration between the Hellenic Foundation for Culture, the National Museum of Archaeology in Lisbon, the Secretariat General of Communication and Information of the Hellenic Republic, the Press and Information Office of the Cypriot Ministry of Interior, the Embassies of Greece and Cyprus in Portugal, and Anemon Productions.

The exhibition has already been presented successfully in Nicosia, Athens and Ancient Nemea (2006) as well as in Trieste. It was created by Anemon productions in collaboration with the Illicit Antiquities Research Centre of Cambridge University, the Cyprus Department Antiquities of, the XXXVII Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities, Corinth, the Department of Cultural Technology and Communication in the University of the Aegean, and with the support of the ‘Culture 2000’ program of the European Union
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