Conservation in the Art Market Essay

Conservation in the Art Market Essay

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The art, antiques and antiquities trade employs a wide range of professionals who work in very different areas of the market. It involves from finance to heritage and represents a safe asset for investments. The aim of this research project proposal is to determine the reasons of the importance of the role of the conservators and restorers in the art world. Indeed, through the restoration process and studies many doubts concerning artworks can be resolved. The latest cases in art fraud, like the recent Knoedler Gallery scandal in New York that sold a large number of fake paintings since the nineties (Cohen 2014) or the Bolton Museum fake Amarna princess which was bought by the museum in 2003 for £440,000 (Bailey 2001) the art world is getting more preoccupied about authenticity of artworks.

It is also worrying the situation of the antiquities market where the illicit trade represents almost the 80% of the whole trade. This is due to the multi billion dollar year business that the antiquities market represents (Sease 1997:50; Elia 1995:245). We can cite the Medici scandal, where through a complex international network looted antiquities were laundered by important auction houses, and bought and displayed in some of the major museums of the world (Watson and Todeschini 2006).

The study has three major objectives:

Explain why through the conservation/restoration process of an artwork and its subsequent study, the authenticity of an art piece or antiquity can be established.
Explain why and how conservators/restorers can play a very important role towards the unconvering of the illicit antiquities market
Encourage all professionals of the field in an international consensus about ...

... middle of paper ...

...ral Property, (3/12), pp. 358-363
JAESCHKE, H.F. (1996), The Conservation Treatment of Looted Antiquities and the Responsibilities of Conservators, in Archaeological Conservation and its Consequences pp. 82-85, International Institute for Conservation
PYE, E (2001), Caring for the Past. Issues in Conservation for Archaeology and Museums, James & James (Science Publishers) Ltd.
WATZMAN, H. (2005), Reality check, Nature, vol.434 (3) pp.13-15
WARD, B. (1994), Conservation and the Antiquities Trade,London 2-3 December, International Journal of Cultural Property, vol. 3 (02), pp.358-363, Cambridge University Press
Introduction to Research and Research Methods (2010), University of Bradford, School of Management
COLLIS, J. and HUSSEY, R (2003) Business Research: a practical guide for undergraduate and postgraduate students, second edition. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

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