Free Dina’s Art

February 2010 – Waiting for Word…
February 11, 2010, 6:24 pm
Filed under: Active Decency | Tags: , , , ,

It has been three months since the  ICOM Ethics  Committee met in Paris. The matter of Dina Babbitt’s Art and Human Rights was, I believe, on the agenda of that meeting, at least as a point of discussion.

It may be overly optimistic to look for results so soon. I’m hoping not. Knowing that the Ethics Committee is very earnest in its work, and having already sent the following message, I am now wondering if I am being too pushy too soon, or if 12 weeks is a reasonable amount of time after which to seek out fresh information to confirm that Dina’s Art and her Human Rights are not forgotten.

Well, hasty or not, here is the most recent missive to my contact at ICOM.

February 10, 2010 (12:50 hrs EST)
Ottawa, Canada

Dear Mrs Murphy,

I am writing to request any further information you might be able to offer on the matter of the Auschwitz Museum and Dina Babbitt’s human rights claims, specifically the return of her Gypsy portraits.

Since Mrs Babbitt’s recent death, the museum’s current practice now encroaches on the human rights of not just one person, but of five, Mrs. Babbitt’s heirs.

I appreciate that the Ethics Committee, no doubt, has a full roster of issues and one that encompasses many larger problems than this. Nevertheless I believe that human rights, defined as clearly as they are in the UN Universal Declaration, should be a concept readily accessible to any thinking person, most particularly to those who work where humanity’s extremes of good and evil are most starkly documented.

I thank you for your efforts and whatever information you can provide at this time, as well as for the many other instances where the Ethics Committee works to achieve a global standard of humanly respectable museum practices and policies. It is commendable work toward a worthy goal.


Tim Thibeault

cc: Karin Babbitt
cc: Michele Kane


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