A New York judge has ordered the seizure of a Roman bronze sculpture from the Cleveland Museum of Art in a search warrant related to a criminal investigation into looting and trafficking of antiquities in Turkey.
The warrant described the artwork as having a value of $20 million. The sculpture, long described by the museum as representing the Roman emperor and philosopher Marcus Aurelius, was removed from view at the museum more than two months ago without public explanation. The museum also changed the description of the sculpture on its website, where it now calls the work a "Draped Male Figure.
"The sculpture, which stands 6.3 feet high, has long been considered the centerpiece of the museum’s collection of ancient Roman art and one of the highlights in a permanent collection of more than 65,000 works of art. The museum acquired the sculpture in 1986.
Image : The Emperor as Philosopher, probably Marcus Aurelius,'' (reigned AD 161-180), c. AD 180-200. Turkey, Bubon(?) (in Lycia), Roman, late 2nd Century. Bronze, hollow cast in several pieces and joined
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