Universität Bonn

Abteilung für Asiatische und Islamische Kunstgeschichte

25. Mai 2023

Lecture: Illicit trade of antiquities – The Koh Ker statu(e)s. Illicit trade of antiquities – The Koh Ker statu(e)s.

Lecture by PD Dr. Till Sonnemann:

The robbing of temple statues of Koh Ker, the tenth century Angkorian Capital in Cambodia, is a unique crime story, whose investigation is still ongoing. The collaborative work of archaeologists, lawyers and government officials of various countries have revealed an entanglement of art collectors, experts and museums leading to the discovery and return of numerous statues so far. Not being part of this investigtation, the opportunity to attend the arrival of some statues personally in Phnom Penh in 2021 nevertheless inspired me, to design a seminar for the summer semester of 2022 at the University of Bamberg on the debate of disputed objects in Western museums, in which the participants created physical and digital evidence boards on the objects’ history, the people and institutions involved, debating also their legal status. This talk will be an update of my presentation on the Koh Ker statues.

Click here for the poster.

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