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Casa Vicens, the first house designed by Antoni Gaudí in 1888, is in the midst of a renovation in order to be converted into a museum-house. The building, which has been on Unesco’s world heritage list since 1984, is due to open to the public for the first time in autumn 2016.

The Andorran bank MoraBanc acquired Casa Vicens in March 2014, with the aim of making the building accessible to the public, La Vanguardia reports.

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The burgeoning list of appalling acts by ISIS has grown even longer: The Islamic extremist group has blown up a nearly 2,000-year-old temple in the historic ruins of Palmyra, Syria.

UNESCO, the United Nations cultural organization, called the destruction of the Temple of Baalshamin a "war crime."

Maamoun Abdulkarim, Syria's director-general of antiquities and museums, said Sunday that sources in Palmyra informed him that ISIS members rigged the temple with large quantities of explosives and detonated them.

Published in News
Tuesday, 07 July 2015 11:20

UNESCO Announces New World Heritage Sites

Unesco has designated several new World Heritage Sites in Norway, Germany, Israel, and the US during the 39th meeting of the World Heritage Committee in the western German city of Bonn.

Norway's Rjukan-Notodden industrial site includes a group of hydraulic centers and was built early in the last century by the Norsk Hydro company to manufacture fertiliser for agricultural demand.

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The earthquake that struck the Kathmandu Valley on Saturday, April 25, which the Nepalese government estimates has killed more than 3,000 people and left twice that number injured, has severely damaged monuments, temples and historic squares in the capital, Kathmandu, and the cities of Patan (or Lalitpur) and Bhaktapur.

Unesco’s representative in Nepal, Christian Manhart, told AFP, that Kathmandu’s Durbar Square, part of a complex of historic buildings and palaces built between the 12th and 19th centuries, was among the worst affected sites.

Published in News
Thursday, 30 October 2014 11:15

Restored Cranach Altar to be Unveiled in Germany

The famous Cranach Altar (1555) which is located the Weimarer Stadtkirche, Germany has finally been restored to its former glory. The altar is considered a masterpiece of German Reformation-era art and will be unveiled on October 31st; Reformation Day - in a televized church service, Die Welt reports.

The Altar is to be found in Stadtkirche, a Gothic Church which is UNESCO-listed; the altar is regarded as the premier Reformation-era piece from the studio of Lucas Cranach the Elder (1472-1553). Two years after his father's death; the altar was completed by Lucas Cranach the Younger (1515-1586).

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The inscription of several Le Corbusier buildings on the Unesco’s World Heritage List is once again under discussion. According to Le Figaro, the president of the Association of Le Corbusier Sites, Marc Petit—who is also the mayor of Firmini, a small town in France’s Loire region featuring several of the architect’s buildings—is undeterred by the two previously unsuccessful attempts.

“We’ve redone our application taking into account the experts’ recommendations, particularly regarding the reduction of the number of sites,” he said, “although the proposal includes a new country, India.”

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The Wedgwood Collection, described as one of the most important industrial archives in the world, could be broken up and sold unless £2.7m is raised in just three months.

The Art Fund has launched a public appeal to save the vast collection of treasures held in Staffordshire including ceramics, manuscripts and paintings, which has been described by Unesco as “unparalleled in its diversity and breadth”.

The price of the collection was set at £15.7m, and the majority has been raised from the Art Fund, the Heritage Lottery Fund and charitable trusts.

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Drawings of mammoths, human footprints and other art carved on cave walls in southern France about 30,000 years ago have been inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage list.

The U.N. cultural agency says that the Decorated Cave of Pont d'Arc contains the best preserved figurative drawings in the world.

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Pablo Picasso’s grandson, Olivier Widmaier Picasso, will raffle off Man in the Opera Hat (1914) to raise funds for the International Association to Save Tyre. The Lebanese city of Tyre is a UNESCO World Heritage site whose history goes back to ancient Phoenicia.

Picasso will sell 50,000 raffle tickets for $135 a piece and a winner will be drawn during an event at Sotheby’s in Paris on December 18. The market value of the small Cubist gouache is said to be around $1 million. The raffle money will go towards creating an arts center and educational institute in Tyre, which has been severely damaged by decades of military conflict.

Picasso will travel to New York in December with the work to promote the raffle. To date, 40,000 raffle tickets have been sold. 

Published in News
Tuesday, 17 September 2013 17:47

Medieval Works from Germany go on View at the Met

Germany’s Hildesheim Cathedral, which was designated a UNESCO world cultural heritage site in 1985, houses one of the most comprehensive surviving collections of ecclesiastical furnishings and medieval masterpieces in Europe. Built between 1010 and 1020, the church is undergoing major renovations, which has allowed for the exhibition Medieval Treasures from Hildesheim to go on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

The show presents 50 medieval treasures – many of which have never been viewed outside Europe – and explores the Hildesheim’s legacy. The first portion of the exhibition focuses on Bishop Bernward of Hildesheim (960-1022), one of leading patrons of the arts during the Middle Ages. The Bishop commissioned many treasures during his time including monumental bronze works, the Golden Madonna, elaborate silver candlesticks and illuminated manuscripts. The life-size woodcarving known as the Ringelheim crucifix, which he commissioned, is one of the earliest surviving three-dimensional sculptures of the Middle Age.

Medieval Treasures from Hildesheim goes on to explore the continuing artistic production of Hildesheim in the high Middle Ages. Works from this period that will be on view at the Met include jeweled crosses, altars adorned with enamel and ivory and gilt-bronze liturgical fans. In the early 13th century Hildesheim became a major center for bronze casting. A monumental bronze baptismal font from this period will be display at the Met; it is one of the most important works to survive from the Middle Ages.  

Medieval Treasures from Hildesheim will be on view at the Met through January 5, 2014.

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