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‘This Has Been’: Art, Memory, Reparation, The Uneven Path towards Implementing the Washington Principles in Europe, Conference, 6 May 2021, 9.00-18.30 CEST

Events and Conferences

More than twenty years have passed since the Washington Principles were adopted, in 1998, and yet the road towards the recovery and restitution of cultural objects forcibly taken under the Nazi regime and occupation still appears long and uneven. The passing of time, the death of victims and witnesses, the many transfers of ownership and location of these properties in an increasingly global market, a certain weakening of our collective memory, all contribute to increase, at each passing decade, the difficulties in paying this debt of justice, whose meaning goes well beyond providing material redress and restitution to the heirs of people violently and unfairly deprived of their cultural goods. As an artwork cannot be reduced to its material and economic value, so the restitution of these looted objects is first and foremost a duty of remembrance and of reparation of suffered injustice, a commitment to mend human relationships – between victims and their communities of origin, between artworks and their history, between past and present – indispensible to preserve the very culture and values of liberal democratic societies. For these reasons the conference aims at fostering thoughtful reflection on the current state of implementation of the Washington principles in Europe, particularly by comparing the experiences of three key countries – Italy, Switzerland, and Germany – that have been most directly involved in the whirling circulation of cultural objects which preceded, accompanied and followed WWII. The final section of the conference will also try and investigate the relation between restitution of ‘looted memory’ and art as a way of remembrance, restitution, and reparation.

Under the patronage of the Italian National Commission for UNESCO
Under the patronage of the General Consulate of the Federal Republic of Germany in Milan Under the patronage of the Jewish Community of Milan
Under the patronage of the Shoah Memorial of Milan
In partnership with the Art-Law Centre, Faculty of Law, Université de Genève

The conference will be introduced by a virtual guided tour of the Shoah Memorial of Milan and by the showing of the documentary film Hitler vs. Picasso and the Others on Wednesday, 5 May, in the afternoon. English subtitles will be available for the virtual tour and the film, but the film presentation and the debate after the film will be held solely in Italian.

Programme

h. 9.00

Welcome speeches

Stefano SOLIMANO, Dean, Faculty of Law, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Guido MERZONI, Dean, Faculty of Political and Social Sciences, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Antonella OCCHINO,
Dean, Faculty of Economics, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Claus Robert KRUMREI, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Milan
Gadi SCHÖNHEIT,
Culture Department, Jewish Community of Milan
Roberto JARACH,
President, Shoah Memorial Foundation of Milan
Gabrio FORTI,
Director, Federico Stella Graduate School of Criminal Justice

h. 9.30

The Washington Principles: Genesis, Implications, Evolution, Practice

Chair
: Arianna VISCONTI, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Alessandro CHECHI,
Art-Law Centre, Université de Genève
Francesco PROVENZA,
Carabinieri Command for the Protection of Cultural Heritage
Eike SCHMIDT,
Gallerie degli Uffizi, Florence

h. 11.00

Implementation of the Washington Principles in Italy

Chair: Arianna VISCONTI, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Manlio FRIGO,
Università degli Studi di Milano
Bianca GAUDENZI, Deutsches Historisches Institut in Rom

h. 12.15

Implementation of the Washington Principles in Germany

Chair: Gabrio FORTI, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Meike HOPP,
Technische Universität Berlin
Matthias WELLER,
Rheinische Friedrich Wilhelms Universität, Bonn

h. 13.30 – Lunch break

h. 15.00

Implementation of the Washington Principles in Switzerland

Chair: Gabrio FORTI, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Nikola DOLL,
Kunstmuseum Bern
Marc-André RENOLD, Art-Law Centre, Université de Genève

h. 16.30

From Restitution of Memory to Memory as Reparation: Art and Cultural Property Born from Remembrance

Chair
: Claudia MAZZUCATO, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Annalisa DE CURTIS,
Morpurgo de Curtis ArchitettiAssociati
Simonetta DELLA SETA,
International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance

h. 18.00-18.30

Final debate and conclusion of works

Simultaneous interpreting provided

Participation will be free of charge, but registration at asgp.unicatt.it is mandatory

The Registration link is here.  Attendance online

Information and contacts

Alta Scuola “Federico Stella” sulla Giustizia Penale (ASGP)
Largo Gemelli, 1 – 20123 Milano (Italy)
Phone +39 02 7234 5175
e-mail: asgp@unicatt.it – Website : asgp.unicatt.it

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