What Happened in Museums this Week?

What Happened in Museums This Week? January 4 – 10

Alliance Names 2014 Great American Museum Advocates

The American Alliance of Museums (AAM) has selected the first two Great American Museum Advocates from nominations submitted by museums of all types and sizes, all across the country.

The winners are Simone Batiste, 16 years old from Oakland, CA, nominated by the Chabot Space & Science Center there, and Spencer Hahn, an 8-year old from Indianapolis nominated by The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. To read more, click here.

Group to Search for Nazi-looted Artwork in Israel

Hundreds of paintings, sculptures, and items of Judaica confiscated from European Jews by the Nazis may be illegally adorning the walls of Israel’s top museums, a group tasked with recovering assets lost in the Holocaust said Wednesday.

Hashava: The Company for Location and Restitution of Holocaust Victims’ Assets said it would team up with the Israeli museums thought to be in possession of Nazi-looted art — the Israel Museum, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, the Ein Harod Museum, and the Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum — to track down the rightful heirs. To read more, click here.

Lady Gaga to Open Michael Jackson Museum with £1.25m of Memorabilia She Owns

Lady Gaga is an eccentric sort, but few had her down as a colossal hoarder… of Michael Jackson’s property.

In fact, the “Do What You Want” singer owns so much of the late King of Pop’s stuff ($1.25 million, to be precise), she’s decided to open an entire museum dedicated to showcasing it. To read more, click here.

Looted Viking Treasure is Discovered in British Museum Store

A Celtic treasure looted by the Vikings more than 1,000 years ago has been discovered in the British Museum‘s storerooms. An ornate, gilded disc brooch dating from the eighth or ninth century was found by chance and is being described as a “staggering find”. No-one knew of its existence until now.

It had been concealed in a lump of organic material excavated from a Viking burial site at Lilleberge in Norway by a British archaeologist in the 1880s and acquired by the British Museum in 1891. To read more, click here.

Merger of Museums is Lost in Air & Space

This is a tale of two museums that, in an ideal Balboa Park, might marry.

But even studying the union, for two years a gleam in the eye of the Air & Space Museum, was rejected last summer by the Automotive Museum. To read more, click here.

MoMA to Demolish Folk Art Museum Building Despite Acclaimed Design, Critics’ Rage

The Museum of Modern Art has told the little museum next door to “folk off.”

The behemoth arts institution in New York has decided to go ahead with the demolition of the former American Folk Art Museum — which sits on a neighboring lot on West 53rd St. — so that it may yet again expand, adding another 100,500 square feet to the sprawling arts complex. To read more, click here.

Mumbai’s T2 Could Become World’s Most Visited ‘Museum’

In two weeks, India’s largest museum will open its glass doors to the public. Unlike other museums, though, you would need an international air ticket to enter — this museum with nearly 7,000 artefacts, a 3km long art wall and works by over 1,500 artists is actually housed inside an airport. To read more, click here.

Museum claims Renoir bought for $7 at flea market was stolen in 1951

A small Pierre-Auguste Renoir landscape painting has set off a dispute between a major American art museum and a woman who said she purchased the painting for just $7 at a flea market in 2009.

The Baltimore Museum of Art said the Renoir was stolen from its premises in 1951. A court hearing is scheduled for Friday to determine whether the museum or Virginia resident Martha Fuqua is the rightful owner of the painting. To read more, click here.

Museum Plans to Return Historic Plane to Normandy for D-Day Commemoration

Inside a hangar on a small airstrip in western New York, a World War II veteran is being prepared to return to Normandy for the 70th commemoration of D-Day.

The National Warplane Museum in Geneseo, NY, is home to Whiskey 7, a C47 that carried paratroopers across the English Channel to their mission of liberation. To read more, click here.

Va. Museum Shuts Lab with USS Monitor Artifacts, Citing Lack of Federal Funds

The Virginia museum that holds the famous turret of the sunken Civil War ironclad warship USS Monitor says it is closing the laboratory that houses the artifact because of a lack of federal funding.

The Mariners’ Museum in Newport News has been the congressionally designated repository for Monitor artifacts since 1987. It also houses, among other things, the legendary ship’s two giant guns, propeller and steam engine. To read more, click here.

What headlines caught your eye this week?

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