ICOM Red List of Latin-American Cultural Objects at Risk

New emergency - new Red List from ICOM

Published on 19 May 2010

Author(s): ICOM/Barbara Schieber

Type:  News

Faced with an emergency situation, the international community of heritage professionals has drawn up a Red List of Latin-American Cultural Objects at Risk to help put a stop to the illicit trade in cultural property

ICOM is the international organisation of museums and museum professionals which is committed to the conservation, continuation and communication to society of the world’s natural and cultural heritage, present and future, tangible and intangible. In Latin America, looting of archaeological sites and thefts from museums and religious edifices are inflicting irreparable damage on the heritage of the continent and of mankind as a whole. Objects are being wantonly removed from their historical context to satisfy the growing international demand for antiquities.
 

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                                                    Aztec jade mask

Faced with an emergency situation, the international community of heritage professionals has drawn up a Red List of Latin-American Cultural Objects at Risk to help put a stop to the illicit trade in cultural property. This list contains 25 examples of specific pre-Columbian and Colonial heritage categories which are systematically looted throughout Latin America and are in great demand on the illegal antiquities market.

 

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                                Moche Stirrup and Spout Portrait Bottle

All the categories of object in the Red List are protected by legislation and banned from export, and may under no circumstances be imported or put on sale. The Red List is an appeal to museums, auction houses, art dealers and collectors not to acquire these objects. The Red List is also designed to help customs officials, police officers and art dealers to identify them.

This is a list of the types of object from Latin America which are particularly at risk and most likely to be stolen. It is in no way exhaustive. Because of the tremendous variety of objects, styles, and periods, any antiquity from Latin America should be viewed with suspicion.
 

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                                        Vera Cruz Ceramic Figure

Pre-Columbian Objects
Ceramics
Maya Polychrome Vessels
Urns from the Amazon River Region
Moche Vessels (Peru)
Nayarit Figures (Mexico)
Jama Coaque Figures and Vessels (Ecuador)

Lithics
Openwork Grindstones
Maya Stelae
Teotihuacan Masks (Mexico)
San Agustin Statues (Colombia)

Jade
Hacha [axe] Pendants
Olmec Figurines (México)
Maya Pendants

Metals
Tumaco-Tolita Masks
Eagle Pendants

Wood
Inca Keros
Snuff Trays
Carved Oars (Peru)

Textiles
Nasca, Chimu and Wari Feather Weavings (Peru)
Paracas,Wari, Chimu and Chancay Textiles (Peru)

Colonial Objects
Sculpture
Colonial Religious Sculptures
Ivory Christ (Mexico)
Corn-Stem Paste Figures (México)

Painting
Mexican and Guatemalan Paintings
Cuzco and Quito Paintings

Silver Crafts
Liturgical Silver Objects

For details of each item according to category go to the Red List of Latin-American Cultural Objects at Risk at the ICOM site...

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