A great initiative has been undertaken by the team at the Modern Art Iraq Archive to highlight works which were stolen from Baghdad’s National Museum of Modern Art. After the invasion of Iraq in 2003, and the subsequent breakdown of security, the Museum of Modern Art was vandalized, and over 8,500 works of art were looted! This was an extremely sad event for the nation of Iraq and its people, as the National Museum of Modern Art was in charge of maintaing a significant chunk of Iraq’s art history. After the looting of the Museum, the nation’s entire art scene virtually disappeared overnight. Most of these works ended up on the market, with many being sold to unasuming collectors and institutions.
This very tragic event in Iraq’s recent history has not been reported on enough. Most people around the world are still unaware of the horrible events that took place. The people behind the Modern Art Iraq Archive include a top notch team of experts dedicated to raising awareness of Iraq’s rich cultural past.
Salem Atta Sabri and Mehmed Ali (part of the Modern Art Iraq Archive team), have put together a Red List of over 100 works that were stolen from Baghdad’s National Museum of Modern Art. They also provide a brief history of Iraq’s art scene. Keep your eyes open for these works, and try to help a nation regain part of its cultural legacy back!
Take a look at the Red List here:
Take a look at the Modern Art Iraq Archive here: