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Mexico Seized 14 Pre-Hispanic Artifacts From Being Shipped Out of a Tijuana Post Office

The latest repatriation effort to hit the art world.

The art world has seen a steady stream of repatriation efforts as of late. From the Brooklyn Museum returning 1,300 Pre-Colombian artifacts back to Costa Rica, the National Gallery of Australia sending 14 artworks back to India or a Nigerian artist who proposed new work to the British Museum in exchange for the Benin Bronzes.

After receiving an anonymous tip, Mexico’s attorney general’s office reported that they seized 14 Teotihuacan artifacts that were going to be shipped out of a Tijuana post office. Similar to Costa Rica, India and various others, Mexico has been trying to stop the illegal trafficking of their pre-Hispanic objects and artworks.

Back in October, the Mexican government launched a campaign called “My Heritage Is Not For Sale (Mi Patrimonio No Se Vende)” to stop the illegal exchange of Mexican artifacts to reclaim what the nation believes to be the rightful ownership of their cultural history. Despite contacting a number of auction houses, including Christie’s, Mexico has seen only minimal objects repatriated.

Daniel Salinas Córdova, a Mexican independent archaeologist and researcher living in Germany told VICE World News that “All of the auctions are bending the law by stating the pieces up for sale were obtained legally before the 70s, even if they can’t provide proof,” adding, “It is the same issue as with drugs…As long as there is an appetite, a demand for the cultural heritage of other countries, there will be a supply.”

Elsewhere in the world of art, Patrick Quarm releases a multilayered print edition with Avant Arte.

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