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  1. UK returns 3,000-year-old tablet looted during Iraq War
    A 3,000-year-old carved stone tablet from Babylonia, which promises a curse on those who would destroy it, is to be flown home from Britain after being looted during the Iraq War. British Museum boss Hartwig Fischer handed over the priceless work to Iraqi Ambassador Salih Husain Ali during a ceremony on Tuesday after museum experts had verified its provenance. "It is a very important piece of Iraq's cultural heritage," said Fischer, praising the "extraordinary and tireless work" of border officials. They spotted the object at London's Heathrow airport in 2012 and contacted the museum after being presented with fake documents. "They seized this item when they saw it at a British port and several years later, after a lot of legal work, we are able to effect this transfer," said Michael Ellis, Britain's Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism. "It's a very important and significant moment."
  2. HRH Duchess of Cambridge announced as Royal Patron of the Foundling Museum
    The Foundling Museum announced that Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge has become its Patron. This patronage recognises the Museum’s unique work to transform the wellbeing and life chances of vulnerable children and young adults through creative collaboration with artists. Drawing on its landmark history, the Museum improves the skills, confidence and joy in life of young people at society’s margins. The patronage is announced ahead of the Duchess’ visit to the Foundling Museum later today, where she will learn more about the Museum’s pioneering programmes, particularly its training programme for care-experienced young adults and creative projects with young psychiatric in-patients. The celebrated poet and Museum Trustee, Lemn Sissay MBE, has written and will recite a
  3. Iraqi museum unveils 'looted' artefacts
    Over 2,000 artefacts, including about 100 that were looted and found abroad, were unveiled Tuesday in a museum in Basra province on the southern tip of Iraq, authorities said. Basra is the most oil-rich province in Iraq but its heritage sites have long been neglected. On Tuesday between 2,000 and 2,500 pieces went on display in the Basra Museum, the second largest in Iraq, said Qahtan al-Obeid, head of archeology and heritage in the province. "They date from 6000 BC to 1500 AD," he told AFP, referring to the Assyrian, Babylonian and Sumerian periods. Obeid said about 100 artefacts -- most of which came from Jordan and the United States -- were given back to Iraq to be displayed in the museum, a former palace of deposed dictator Saddam Hussein. The heritage of Iraq, most of which was former Mesopotamia, has paid a heavy price due to the wars that have ravaged the country for nearly four decades.
  4. Newly-discovered painting by Flemish Renaissance trailblazer Frans Floris unveiled at TEFAF Maastricht
    A large, newly-discovered and unpublished early work by the influential Antwerp painter, draftsman and etcher Frans Floris de Vriendt (called Floris, 1519/20-1570), who “radically transformed Netherlandish art” and was more renowned in his day than Bruegel the Elder, has been unveiled at TEFAF Maastricht 2019 by Carlo Orsi-Trinity Fine Art. This important painting depicting Susanna and the Elders forms the centrepiece of the gallery’s stand. The work was completed shortly after Floris’s return from a long visit to Italy, and it reveals the artist’s careful study of Roman antiquities and the work of Italian Renaissance artists including Raphael. Floris was praised for his treatment of the nude, and in this substantial canvas, which shows the beautiful Susanna undressed and about to bathe, the artist displays a sensitivity to the handling of flesh which was exceptional in Netherlandish art at
  5. Exhibition is the first to focus solely on Motherwell's approach to large-format painting
    Kasmin announces Sheer Presence: Monumental Paintings by Robert Motherwell, opening March 21, 2019, at the gallery’s flagship space at 509 West 27th Street. This unprecedented exhibition will be the first to focus solely on Motherwell’s approach to large-format painting and will be comprised of eight works spanning the 1960s - 1990, including a core group of paintings from the collection of The Dedalus Foundation. This will be the fourth exhibition on which Kasmin Gallery and The Dedalus Foundation have collaborated. As one of the most novel and confident mark-makers of the Abstract Expressionist era, Motherwell consistently turned to the monumental canvas to pursue his lifelong ambition of realizing “sheer presence, beingness, as such, objectivity and true invention” (R. Motherwell, quoted