Entries by Ruth

Fragonard’s Layers & the Promotion of Conservation Treatments

Ruth Osborne X-Rays. Lasers. Multi-Spectral Imaging. We’ve posted on these before: how newly developed technologies like the Er:YAG laser are promoted with such “promising” results, despite persisting doubts from other conservation professionals as well as publications on the risks of its application. At ArtWatch UK, past coverage has highlighted the business interests involved in conservation […]

Museum Mismanagement On Trial: The Berkshire Museum Taken to Court.

Ruth Osborne Thomas Wilmer Dewing, The White Dress, 1901. Courtesy: Berkshire Fine Arts. The story of the Berkshire Museum’s massive deaccession sale and change of mission over the past 5 months has been one that mirrors a rapidly tottering see-saw.   We reported a few months back on the Berkshire Museum’s planned sale of 40 […]

Satellite Museum Dreams and Misgivings in Abu Dhabi

Ruth Osborne The long-awaited opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi Museum is actually happening. On November 11th, the site is set to open to fan-fare: “workshops, tours, music, and international performances and a few surprises along the way”.   This is all thanks to generous loans from the Musée du Louvre in Paris, a lending […]


Remembering the Consequences of Mishandling Art.

Ruth Osborne Every so often it is useful – indeed, instructing – to take a glance at the current environment in the art world and see what recent developments show about what the future holds. For ArtWatch, this means considering again the consequences of collections across the country that we have seen dismembered or mishandled over the past few […]


The Conservation Laundering of Illicit Antiquities

Einav Zamir Marion True, former curator of antiquities at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles [Fig. 2], once hailed as the “heroic warrior against plunder,” [1] was indicted in 2005 for violations against Italy’s cultural patrimony laws.[2] True became the first American curator to face such charges [3] — not coincidentally, it was also the […]