Events - The Art of Cultural Property Protection - Any Takers?

The Federal Bureau of Investigation estimates that worldwide losses of art and cultural property crime, including theft, fraud, looting and trafficking totals about $6 billion US annually, making this the fourth most profitable crime after money laundering, drugs and arms trafficking.

Through news headlines we have become aware of the many major art crimes but this is the “proverbial tip of the iceberg.” There are experts who suggest that Canada has become a “prime target for art theft and a dumping ground for stolen art.”

This presentation will review several of the recent art thefts that have occurred on an international, national and local scale, touch on who is stealing art, why art is stolen and look towards solutions in the protection of art and reporting of an art crime.

About Bob Marentette

A confessed Windsor Ontario native, Bob has been employed in the Canadian security industry for just over four decades having served in numerous roles from guard duties to senior management. The last twenty-seven years Bob has been involved in the protection of cultural property having worked for some of the largest and world renowned museums and art galleries in Canada. He is currently the Director of Security and Building Operations for the Art Gallery of Hamilton.

He has been honored several times by various security associations for his contributions to the Canadian security industry and has been written about and published in Canadian Security Magazine. Bob has a passion for art protection, art crime and has given numerous presentations such as this in Ontario. He has been quoted in the New York Times and had the lead role in a 2007 American made for TV documentary on art theft.

He is Certified Institutional Protection Manager and a member of numerous security associations including International Council of Museums (ICOM) and the International Foundation for Cultural Property Protection (IFCPP) in Denver Colorado.

While dibbling and dabbling in the collecting of art, Bob has taken interest in Canadian and First Nations artwork. A Manitoulin Island lover, he spends his vacations on the Island and in his spare time, with his three grandchildren and family in Windsor.

Resources available on researching or reporting art theft.

• Museum Security Network: www.museum-security.org
• Art Market Monitor: www.artmarketmonitor.com
• Art Loss Register: www.artloss.com
• Interpol: www.interpol.int (works of art)
• Looted Art: www.lootedart.com
• FBI: www.fbi.org (Click; AZ index, choose “A”)
• Association for Research into Art Crimes Against Art (ARCA): www.artcrimesresearch.org
• Sŭreté du Québec-Art Alert List: art.alert@surete.gu.ca (request your name to be placed on mailing list)
• Art Hostage: www.arthostage.blogspot.com
• RAND Corporation- Research Document 2011: “Assessing the illegal trade in cultural property from a public policy perspective.” www.rand.org
• International Foundation for Art Research: www.ifar.org
• Bob Marentette: rmarentette75@sympatico.ca