Treasure hunt

By Sally Blundell In Current Affairs

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16th April, 2011
This is how it goes. A museum wanting to divest itself of gifted items will consult staff, contact donors, consider other registered museums and ensure any disposal is fully documented. This is laid out in Te Papa’s collection resource guide and the UK Museums Association’s Disposal Toolkit. So, how did a bronze statuette of Canterbury founder John Robert Godley, donated by New Zealand to the Imperial Institute in London in 1939, end up in a Haymarket antique shop with a £35,000 price tag and no provenance? And how did a finely carved 19th-century Maori pare (lintel), once proudly ...

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