Thieves escape with €2.2m gold artwork after 220kph chase


Thieves escape with €2.2m gold artwork after 220kph chase

© Copyright :Arne Quinze
 Thieves smashed their way into an art gallery to steal a 2.2 million euro artwork before escaping police by fleeing at 220 kilometres an hour down the wrong side of a highway with their lights out.
The burglary broke through 5cm thick reinforced glass using some kind of battering ram in order to reach the piece, called “Golden Natural Chaos” which is made from 45kg of 18 karat gold.
The entire operation took just four minutes. A neighbour of the gallery in Knokke, Belgium captured the getaway car being loaded up after being awoken by the alarm.

Artist Arne Quinze who took more than 2 years to make the work, told Euronews he was stunned and devastated because he had invested so much – both financially and artistically in its creation.

“When it was finished I remember the team went silent. Not just because they were proud but because of the feeling created by the piece. The piece made us,” he said. “It’s impossible to make that piece again.”

“Now it’s a race. Like every piece of art it’s impossible to sell so they will melt it down for the gold,” he added.

Police were on the scene within around five minutes, according to a spokesman for the artist, but were unable to recover the work despite a long car chase.

The artwork, which was originally made in Belgium as part of a collaboration with precious metals manufacturer Heimerle+Meule has toured the world, passing through China, the US and France before returning to its homeland.


The scene of the crime


Museum seeks to preserve, restore artifacts

Museum seeks to preserve, restore artifacts


Photo by Sgt. Alan Brutus, Army University PressMegan Hunter, museum specialist, prepares a buffalo hide overcoat used in the Indian Wars, circa 1872, for transport to a conservator April 12 at the Frontier Army Museum. Photo by Sgt. Alan Brutus, Army University Press.

The staff of the Frontier Army Museum face a daily dilemma: the museum’s artifacts continue to age. To minimize the aging process, pieces of the collection are routinely preserved through stabilization or restoration.

“Stabilization is used to secure the object and protect it from further damage,” said Megan Hunter, FAM museum specialist. “Restoration is when a conservator brings the objects back to its original state.”

The most recent item selected for preservation is a buffalo hide overcoat used in the Indian Wars, circa 1872. FAM specialists sent the overcoat to the Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center in Omaha, Neb., April 16 for repairs that include patching small holes, mending stitching and general cleaning.

Unlike the overcoat, it is not possible to stabilize or restore every piece of history.

“Eventually all artifacts reach the end of their lifespan, at which point the U.S. Army Center of Military History in the District of Columbia will determine the outcome of that artifact,” Hunter explained.

Sometimes objects are reproduced when stabilization and restoration are not viable options, which was the case for the four-mule wagon currently on display at the museum.

“A conservator used the Army regulations (‘Specifications for Means of Transportation, Paulin, Stoves and Ranges, and Lamps and Fixtures for Use in the United States Army,’ Washington Government Printing Office, 1882) of the time to reconstruct the wooden portions of the wagon and adhered to the structure measurements and colors,” Hunter said.

Conservation is an ongoing effort at the museum where physical condition and historical significance prioritizes items. Once an artifact meets the preservation criteria, it is prepared and sent for treatment.

“Treatments range from vacuuming something off of an artifact to complete restoration,” said George Moore, FAM museum curator. “Depending on what treatment is required determines the length of time for the process.”

Treatment typically averages two to six months for most artifacts.

Hunter added that proper handling and supports, environmental controls and limiting exposure to light are actions taken to slow the deterioration of objects.

“It is important to care for and treat historical items like those in the Frontier Army Museum collection because they are a learning tool. Whether it’s an exhibition or individualized study, an authentic artifact gives you more information than a photograph or detailed description ever would,” Hunter said.

Museums are not the only place artifact preservation can take place, and many techniques can be done at home to aid in preserving personal items such as uniforms and paperwork.

To learn more about these techniques, join the Friends of the Frontier Army Museum for Museum Night at 5:30 p.m. May 1. During this event, FAM staff will explain preservation methods that can protect family heirlooms.

“We hope that people will understand that half the battle is protecting the artifact before it becomes in need of conservation treatment,” Hunter said.

For more information about attending Museum Night, visit the Friends of the Frontier Army Museum website at


Arizona museum seeks donations to preserve stolen painting found in New Mexico

KRQE Albuquerque

Arizona museum seeks donations to preserve stolen painting found in New Mexico

AZ painting_1524694302384.jpg_40727858_ver1.0_640_360

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A museum is asking for donations to help preserve a painting that turned up in a New Mexico antique shop more than 30 years after it was stolen.

“Woman Ochre” by Willem de Kooning is now back where it belongs at the University of Arizona Art Museum.

Following its theft in 1985, its whereabouts remained a mystery. That was the case until a Silver City antique shop owner picked it up at an estate sale last year.

Now the museum wants to put it back on display but needs some help to make sure its properly preserved.

If you would like to donate, click here for more information. 

L.A. Artist Suing Old Navy for Ripping Off Her Work


L.A. Artist Suing Old Navy for Ripping Off Her Work


Los Angeles–based illustrator and artist Lili Chin has publicly accused Old Navy of ripping off some of her designs for a set of pajamas the retailer debuted last fall.

Chin told Complex she first became aware of Old Navy’s potential copycat design back in November. “A customer contacted me when she saw these pajamas on the Old Navy site and said they looked like the designs from my Dogs of the World series,” she said. “I was upset. Not only because it was stolen but because I have always wanted to make pajamas with my dog designs on them.”

Lili Chin@lilita_yaya

Old Navy is denying copyright infringement. I have written more here:  Please RT.

At first, Chin reached out to the company to try and have the matter settled amicably, but after Old Navy denied the copyright infringement, she decided to file a lawsuit. “I work as a professional artist and this is how I earn a living selling prints, and licensing my copyrighted designs,” she said. “When my attorneys reached out to Old Navy to resolve this matter, they denied any copyright infringement, told to court to give me nothing and demanded I pay their legal costs. All I want is for Old Navy to do the right thing.”

In the past few years, this kind of theft from independent artists has made headlines thanks to companies like Zara and Urban Outfitters, both of which have been accused of ripping off artists’ work on multiple occasions. “Large companies like Old Navy should know better that images they find on the internet are someone else’s intellectual property,” Chin said, when asked about these other cases. “Working with artists and compensating us fairly would be the ethical thing to do.”

Chin explained that the legal process against Old Navy has been stressful, but she wants to send a message to all retailers. “I am not going to give up,” she said. “Companies need to know that they can’t steal from artists, not compensate them, and get away with it.”