Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Germany's Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation Refuses to Return Nefertiti Bust to Egypt

BERLIN (REUTERS).- A German foundation rejected Monday an Egyptian request to return the 3,400-year-old bust of Queen Nefertiti, a sculpture which draws over one million viewers annually to a Berlin museum.
Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) sent the request to the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, which runs the Neues Museum in the German capital where the bust is kept.
"The foundation's position on the return of Nefertiti remains unchanged," foundation president Professor Hermann Parzinger said in a statement. "She is and remains the ambassador of Egypt in Berlin."
Egypt's antiquities chief, Zahi Hawass, appealed to the foundation seeking the return of the bust, famed for its almond-shaped eyes and swan-like neck. However, the foundation said it did not consider the letter an official state request as it had not been signed by Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif.
German archaeologist Ludwig Borchardt discovered the bust about 275 km south of Cairo in 1912, and it was taken to Germany the following year.
Hawass, who sent a similar letter in 2009, has said in the past that documents presented by the Neues Museum confirmed Borchardt tried to pass the bust off as a less significant find to secure it for Berlin. The museum has said it was acquired lawfully and Egypt had no legal claim to it.

The SCA, which Hawass heads, said in an email that its request had been approved by both Prime Minister Nazif and the Egyptian ministry of culture.
"This request is a natural consequence of Egypt's long-standing policy of seeking the restitution of all archaeological and historical artefacts that have been taken illicitly out of the country," it said.
Hawass has campaigned to repatriate several pharaonic treasures in recent years, including the Rosetta Stone now in the British Museum.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey in Berlin and Patrick Werr in Cairo; writing by Brian Rohan; editing by David Stamp)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


     Construction grade 2x4s are the material of choice for Morgan Herrin's intricate hand-carved sculptures. It takes almost a year to complete a project such as this one, the study of a knight in 15th century armour morphing out of a series of stalactites and stalagmites. The contrasts in this large-scale wood sculpture bring the viewer to consider the passage of time and the effects of nature. The classical aspect of Herrin's work is heightened by the attention to detail. Here is what Morgan has written about his new work:

     "Untitled Knight is the product of the combination of two subjects: 15th century plate armor, and geological cave structure. Studied separately, these two subjects are completely unrelated. The man-made geometric precision of plate armor is formally opposite the flowing, organic nature of stalactites and stalagmites. Seen together, these two parts present a striking contrast in form and create a theme of time and the effects of nature. The pose of the figure and the general composition are references to the classical sculpture “The Dying Gaul” of ancient Roman antiquity. Rendered entirely in laminated construction-grade 2 x 4s, the material itself irreverently contradicts this classical allusion, and at the same time draws attention to our own culture’s reliance on the fast, cheap, and impermanent."
Morgan Herrin Biography     
1992-1993       Private Sculpture Lessons with Martin Delabono, Dallas TX            
1997                Life Drawing Lessons at Southern Methodist University, Dallas TX            
1997 - 1998    Private Life Drawing Lessons with Ellen Soderquist, Dallas TX            
1998 - 2002    BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond VA            
2002 - 2005    MFA from The Ohio State University Sculpture program, Columbus OH    
Selected Exhibitions               
Mulherin Pollard Projects, 317 10th Ave, New York, NY
Lost World, ADA gallery, Richmond, VA            
Scope New York, ADA gallery            
Snap, Morlan Gallery, Lexington, KY            
Diamonds Cut Diamonds, Rare, New York, NY            
Columbus Biennale, Columbus OH            
Exchange Rate, Richmond VA            
FEAR, Polka Dot Gallery, Richmond,VA

Thanks to John Pollard,
owner & director of
and co-owner & director of MULHERIN POLLARD PROJECT