Incoming Getty director not yet clear on museum's policy

Arts blogger Lee Rosenbaum interviewed the newly named Getty Museum director Timothy Potts and posted that "what most startled me was his lack of thorough knowledge about the Getty's written antiquities-collecting policy." The Getty, with its history of controversy over the acquisition of antiquities, has adopted rules that are "more stringent than the UNESCO Convention's guidelines regarding cultural property," she writes at CultureGrrl.

In light of the Getty's history of past antiquities-related mishaps and scandals (which led to its adoption of its unusually strict policy), the failure of Getty officials to fully brief its prospective museum director (and to seek his concurrence) regarding these acquisition rules seems a significant omission, calling into question the current administration's wholehearted commitment to the policy put into place by the previous administration.

Indeed, the Getty's new president, James Cuno, said during our recent radio gig on KCRW that "The Getty Museum is absolutely clear, probably more than any museum in the country, that 1970 is the bright-line date." He ignored the fact that the written policy actually goes far beyond that.

That topic is just part of a much longer, two-part Q-A.

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