Greece Returns Two Stolen Frescoes to Italy in ‘Symbolic Move’

frescoes_grotta(www.minpress.gr / Bloomberg.com, 23.03.09) ) Greece handed over to Italy two pieces of art, in the spirit of cooperation on the battle against smuggling antiquities. They were two thirteenth century frescoes, which had been found in 2006 on Schinoussa Island by Greek authorities conducting an anti-smuggling operation.   Initially, these fragments, depicting two saints, were part of wall paintings from a chapel at Grotta delle Fornelle, in Italy’s southern Caserta region near Naples. They were removed in 1982.  Greek Minister of Culture, Mr. Samaras pointed out that through this symbolic gesture, Greece intends to continue the process of retrieving artifacts illegally transported to other countries, thus strengthening collaboration with Italy on the fight against art theft.  Italy and Greece launched a joint battle some years ago to crack down on trafficking and reclaim smuggled works from museums around the world. Read more…