March 30, 2014

ARCA Announces Nominees for the 2014 Eleanor and Anthony Vallombroso Award for Excellence in Art Crime Scholarship

Ballots have been sent out to the Board of Trustees for ARCA's 2014 Eleanor and Anthony Vallombroso Award for Excellence in Art Crime Scholarship which usually goes to a professor, journalist, or author. Past winners: Norman Palmer (2009); Larry Rothfield (2010); Neil Brodie (2011); Jason Felch and Ralph Frammolino (Jointly - 2012); and Duncan Chappell (2013). The Nominees for the 2014 Eleanor and Anthony Vallombroso Award for Excellence in Art Crime Scholarship are:

Milton Esterow, Editor and publisher of ARTnews.
Nominators’ Synopsis – Author of The Art Stealers (MacMillan, 1973)
Milton Esterow is editor and publisher of ARTnews. Since he bought ARTnews from Newsweek Magazine in 1972, he has guided its growth into the most widely circulated art magazine in the world. Since 1975, ARTnews has won most of the major journalism awards presented to magazines. Its editors and reporters have been honored forty-four times for excellence in reporting, criticism, and design. Under Mr. Esterow's direction, ARTnews became the first magazine to consistently apply rigorous standards of investigative reporting to the art world. Mr. Esterow received a special award for lifetime achievement from the College Art Association, the national organization of educators, artists, art historians, curators, critics, and institutions in 2003. He was cited for “his exceptional contributions to art journalism and investigative art reporting” and for having “overseen the magazine’s financial success while enhancing its reputation and influence in the visual-arts community and beyond.”
Dr. David Gill, Professor of Archaeology, University of Suffolk

Nominators’ Synopsis – "Dr. Gill is has been a persistent and thoughtful advocate for reform in the museum community and the antiquities trade. He has done excellent work on the consequences of the sale of antiquities without history. His research has drawn attention to the impact of looting. Some highlights of his considerable scholarly output include: studying Cycladic figurines from the 3rd millennium BC; the photographic archives from Switzerland which triggered the return of looted objects to Italy; the sale of antiquities in London and New York; and the collecting history of private antiquities collections. David Gill is a Professor of Archaeological Heritage at University Campus Suffolk who has a great knowledge of the cultural property debate, has published extensively against looting, and maintains Looting Matters, the internationally best-known and visited archaeological blog regarding cultural property issues. The blog, updated almost daily, offers not only detailed discussions of the issues surrounding the crime of looting, but also a platform for new evidence of antiquities trafficking, informing the world's archaeological community and helping state authorities to pursue their stolen heritage."
David Gill is a former Rome Scholar at the British School at Rome, and Sir James Knott Fellow at Newcastle University. He was responsible for the Greek and Roman collections at the Fitzwilliam Museum and was subsequently Reader in Mediterranean Archaeology at Swansea University. His Sifting the Soil of Greece: the Early Years of the British School at Athens (1886-1919) [2011] was published to coincide with the 125th anniversary of the School. He received the Outstanding Public Service Award from the Archaeological Institute of America (2012). Gill has published widely on cultural matters and his “Material and intellectual consequences of esteem for Cycladic figures” (co-written with Dr Christopher Chippindale) presented a new methodological approach to studying this area. He has a regular editorial column, “Context Matters”, for the Journal of Art Crime, and runs a research blog, “Looting Matters”.
Simon Mackenzie, Trafficking Culture project at the University of Glasgow.
Nominator’s Synopsis – "Besides being a criminologist who explored art crimes since his doctoral dissertation, launched along Neil Brodie the Trafficking Culture project at the University of Glasgow."
Simon Mackenzie is Professor of Criminology, Law & Society in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Glasgow, where he is also a member of the criminological research staff at the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research, a cross-institutional organization conducting national and international criminological research projects. Prof Mackenzie co-ordinates the Trafficking Culture research group, which is a pioneering interdisciplinary collaboration producing research evidence on the scale and nature of the international market in looted cultural objects, including regional case studies of trafficking networks and evaluative measures of the effects of regulatory interventions which aim to control this form of trafficking. Trafficking Culture is funded with a €1m research grant from the European Research Council. The group employs a core group of researchers plus an affiliate Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow, and four PhD research students, making it a world-leading center for study in this field. As well as producing research evidence, the team are developing educational resources for the next generation of scholars via a new course, run for the first time in 2014, on International Trafficking in Cultural Objects, offered as part of the three Criminology Masters pathways which Prof Mackenzie convenes at Glasgow: the MRes Criminology; the MSc Criminology & Criminal Justice; and the MSc Transnational Crime, Justice & Security. Simon’s research on the international market in illicit cultural objects began with his PhD, leading to the publication in 2005 of Going, going, gone: regulating the market in illicit antiquities, which won the British Society of Criminology Book Prize that year. The book was mainly an empirical study of attitudes and practices of high-end dealers in relation to their engagement with looted artefacts, and an analysis of the implications for regulation and control of the various neutralizing and justificatory narratives surrounding handling illicit objects at the top end of the market. 
From 2005-07, in a study with Prof Penny Green funded by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council, Simon extended this analysis by looking at the market’s reaction to the onset of explicit criminalization in a case study of the Dealing in Cultural Objects (Offences) Act 2003. This research was published in Mackenzie and Green (eds) Criminology and Archaeology: Studies in Looted Antiquities (2009), part of the Onati International Series on Law and Society and based around the proceedings of a workshop at the Onati International Institute for the Sociology of Law exploring the interdisciplinary possibilities of a field of study based both in archaeology and criminology. 
Simon has worked with a number of international organisations, providing research-based input to support initiatives to reduce the international trade in looted cultural objects: eg. he has worked with UNODC in producing briefing documents for UN member states in their 2009 enquiry into Trafficking Cultural Property, leading to policy recommendations made at the UN Commissions and Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice; and he is currently on the editorial committee of ICOM’s International Observatory on Illicit Traffic in Cultural Goods. Prof Mackenzie is a member of the Peer Review Committee of the Arts and Humanities Research Council, Associate Editor of the Howard Journal of Criminal Justice, and a member of the editorial board of the British Journal of Criminology. His criminological research has been supported by grants and contracts from funders including the EU, ESRC, AHRC, both the UK and Scottish Governments, and the UN.
Sandy Nairne, Director, Director, National Portrait Gallery
Nominator’s Synopsis – "His book, Art Theft and the Case of the Stolen Turners, and his outspoken transparency about rewards versus paid information for the recovery of stolen art have been refreshing and thoughtful. He’s a major public figure, head of the National Portrait Gallery, and is a good representative of what this award stands for."
Sandy Nairne is currently Director of the National Portrait Gallery in London, a post he has held since 2002. As director of one of Britain’s popular national museums (visited by more than 2m each year) he has sought to combine a determined drive for research and scholarship in the understanding of collections and in making exhibitions, with a strong emphasis on education and community engagement. He has supported the wider implementation of advanced security procedures (combined with new technologies) to protect collections and loans, and the sharing of information about thefts and cases of forgery, even when this appears difficult for individual museums. 
In July 1994, as Director of Programmes for the Tate, Sandy Nairne flew to Frankfurt on the day following the shocking theft of two paintings by J.M.W.Turner, then worth £24m, and on loan to the Schirn Kunsthalle from the Tate. Nairne then spent eight and a half years coordinating the complex attempts to recover these two great masterpieces. The first was recovered in July 2000, but returned to Britain incognito in order not to disturb the connections made to those holding the second painting (with approval from the Frankfurt Prosecutors’ Office). Following an approved ‘payment for information’ the second painting was returned in December 2002. In 2011 Nairne published a detailed account of the recovery, combined with a close analysis of the issues surrounding high value art theft, from ethics, to value and to motivation. Art Theft and the Case of the Stolen Turners (Reaktion) has gone into a second printing, and been published in translation in Germany and in Japan.
Professor Lyndel V. Prott, Honorary Professor, University of Queensland and Honorary Member of The Australian Academy of the Humanities.

Nominator’s Synopsis – "Professor Lyndel V. Prott ( is an Honorary Professor, University of Queensland and Honorary Member of The Australian Academy of the Humanities. She is the former Head of International Standards Section, UNESCO and then Director of the Cultural Heritage Division where she was instrumental in strengthening existing international instruments and the realisation of the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention. Her scholarship has made contributions to the foundation of cultural heritage law scholarship. We would not perhaps even think of cultural heritage law without her important theoretical scholarship. Her work has brought attention to the plague of antiquities looting and she has been an advocate for concerted international action to combat the theft of heritage and destruction of our collective past."
Lyndel Prott AO (1991), Öst. EKWuK(i) (2000), Hon FAHA; LL.D. (honoris causa) B.A. LL.B. (University of Sydney), Licence Spéciale en Droit international (ULB Brussels), Dr. Juris (Tübingen) and member of Gray’s Inn, London, is former Director of UNESCO’s Division of Cultural Heritage and former Professor of Cultural Heritage Law at the University of Sydney. She has had a distinguished career in teaching, research and practice, including co-operation with ICOM and INTERPOL to improve co-ordination between civil and criminal law to deal with illicit traffic. At UNESCO 1990-2002 she was responsible for the administration of UNESCO’s Conventions and standard-setting Recommendations on the protection of cultural heritage and also for the negotiations on the 1999 Protocol to the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict 1954 and the Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage 2001. She contributed as Observer for UNESCO to the negotiations for the UNIDROIT Convention on Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural Objects 1995. She has authored, co-authored or edited over 280 books, reports or articles, written in English, French or German and translated into 9 other languages. Currently Honorary Professor at the University of Queensland, she has taught at many universities including long distance learning courses on International Heritage Law.