Art and Crime: Exploring the Dark Side of the Art World

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Overview

Through the use of case examples and careful examination, this book presents the first interdisciplinary essay collection on the study of art crime, and its effect on all aspects of the art world. Contributors discuss art crime subcategories, including vandalism, iconoclasm, forgery, fraud, peace-time theft, war looting, archaeological looting, smuggling, submarine looting, and ransom. The contributors offer insightful analyses coupled with specific practical suggestions to implement in the future to prevent and address art crime. This work is of critical importance to anyone involved in the art world, its trade, study, and security.

Art crime has received relatively little attention from those who study art to those who prosecute crimes. Indeed, the general public is not well-aware of the various forms of art crime and its impact on society at large, to say nothing of museums, history, and cultural affairs. And yet it involves a multi-billion dollar legitimate industry, with a conservatively-estimated $6 billion annual criminal profit. Information about and analysis of art crime is critical to the wide variety of fields involved in the art trade and art preservation, from museums to academia, from auction houses to galleries, from insurance to art law, from policing to security. Since the Second World War, art crime has evolved from a relatively innocuous crime, into the third highest-grossing annual criminal trade worldwide, run primarily by organized crime syndicates, and therefore funding their other enterprises, from the drug and arms trades to terrorism. It is no longer merely the art that is at stake.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Though mostly out of public view, art crime is a very lucrative global business. In introducing this collection of 20 essays by international interdisciplinary experts, Charney (Association for Research into Crimes Against Art) situates 'the quiet crime' in the contexts of organized crime, terrorist groups, and the need for better policing policies. Via case studies

and interviews, he addresses disputes over ownership of cultural heritage and wartime plundered art, authenticity, and museum security. The volume includes statistics, reflections on why masterpieces matter, and art images."

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Reference & Research Book News

"A well-edited, useful, readable and (sadly) very much necessary collection."

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PhiloBiblos, philobiblos.blogspot.com

"…a compelling collection that interrogates the evolution of art crime from the modern period to the present… Recommended. Lower and upper-level undergraduates, graduate students, general readers."

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Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313366352
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/30/2009
  • Pages: 261
  • Sales rank: 1,059,476
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

NOAH CHARNEY is an art historian by training and is the founding director of the Association for Research into Crimes against Art (ARCA), a non-profit think tank and consultancy group on art crime prevention and solution. He has been written about internationally, including feature articles in the New York Times Magazine, Italy's Ventiquattro, Time Magazine, and has made appearances on National Public Radio, MSNBC, CNBC and ITV television, and many other news outlets. His novel, The Art Thief, was published in 2007 and has sold in sixteen other languages to date.

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