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22 J. Art Crime 71 (2019)
"Nicolas Koutoulakis, the Antiquities Market and Due Diligence"

handle is hein.journals/jartcrim22 and id is 76 raw text is: 

David W  J. Gill

                                     Context  Matters
         Nicolas  Koutoulakis,   the  Antiquities  Market   and  Due  Diligence

I    l2013, Italian journalist Fabio Isman reported that two marble lions acquired by the J. Paul Getty
\ Miseum in 1958 had been identified from photographs dating to 1912 in an Italian collection at Preturo
(sian.u2013). They are reported to have passed into the hands of the Dragonetti family after 1928.
The lions had been acquired from the Geneva / Paris based dealer Nicolas Koutoulakis (Malibu mv.
58.AA.7-8; Koch  and Wight  1988, 120-23, nos. 45-46). In May 2019, the Italian authorities again
raised the case of the Getty lions seeking clarification on how the pieces had left the country without the
appropriate permits and paperwork. The authorities at the Getty do not appear to have investigated the
history of the pieces in the intervening six years.

    The  dispute between the Italian authorities and the museum revolves, in part, around the integrity
of Koutoulakis as a dealer. His name appears in the organigram showing the network of dealers that
emerged as part of the so-called Medici Conspiracy (Watson and Todeschini 2006; Gill and Chippindale
2007b, 572; Felch and Frammolino  2011,  151). Pat Getz-Gentle recalls Koutoulakis handling the
Cycladic fragments now known  as the Keros Haul (Getz-Gentle 2008; see also Papamichelakis and
Renfrew 2010, 181). This was one of the most notorious lootings of material from the Cyclades (Gill and
Chippindale 1993; Sotirakopoulou 2005; see also Gill 2007). Greece has challenged the sale of some of
the fragments as they have reappeared on the market (e.g. Hammond 1990). Some of the Koutoulakis-
Keros Haul material is now in the Getty mostly via Stefan Hornak but also via an anonymous private
collection and Malcolm Wiener (mv. 78.AA.407; 79.AA.11; 83.AA.201, 83.AA.316.1-2; 83.AA.317.1-
2, 83.AA.318: Sotirakopoulou 2005, 185, no. 174, 192, no. 184, 215-16, no. 211 [Goulandris sculptor],
226, no. 232, 232-34, nos. 240-241 [Schuster sculptor], 236-36, no. 246, 240-42, no. 252). Allegations
have been made over other Koutoulakis material from the Cyclades (Watson and Todeschini 2006, 246).
Two bronzes linked to the sebasteion at Bubon in Turkey were acquired by the Getty from Koutoulakis
(mv. 72.AB.103, 71.AB.458: Mattusch 1996, 213-14,311-13, nos. 19, 44). These formpart of a series of
imperial bronzes that were apparently looted and dispersed to a number of public and private collections
(e.g. Kozloff 1987).

Returns to Greece and Italy

The suggestions that Koutoulakis handled recently surfaced antiquities is supported by the evidence of
a number of objects that have had to be returned to both Greece and Italy. In 2011 the Getty returned
a fragmentary marble funerary relief to Greece as it was realised that it fitted further fragments in the
Kanellopoulos collection in Athens (mv. 73.AA.115: Zagdoun 1978, 291-92, no. 4; Grossman 2001, 11,
no. 2). The connection between the fragments had apparently been made by the former curator at the
Getty, Jiri Frel (Zagdoun 1978, 292). The two fragments were acquired by the Getty from Koutoulakis


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