16 thoughts on “Art and war

  1. Emma Olson

    Sometimes we forget during wartime what happens to art and art museums. I think that people misunderstand how much art is ruined and stolen during times of war. Because the focus is away from the art during wartime, less security and worry about the art occurs and art is then stolen. Pieces of priceless artwork are forever lost and it is very sad. I just was realized this in all honesty and now I know look at wars much differently.

  2. Jillian F.

    An unfortunate result of war are the damages that occur to our history and it is areal tragedy, pieces also get stolen and sold on the Black Market, people selfishly take the artifacts for their own use, and the worst of it all is that some of these things get completely destroyed without a trace of its existence left. These are all very unfortunate outcomes to history that we will never be able to reclaim. But at the same time we have to understand that countries fight for what they believe and they do these things knowing that this is the outcome.

  3. Kiele Marston

    The events that take place during a war will always have negative effects on both sides of the battleground, this fact is inevitable. With war there is always loss. This loss, the events that take place during a war, become imbedded in history as another event to reflect back upon. Losing valuable, historical artifacts from museums, adds a little more history to them. The Mona Lisa, gained its great success mainly because it was once stolen from its museum. Yes, it is terrible that some timeless pieces have been stolen during war, however, this serves as a warning and an awareness for people to realize how valuable these artworks are. Although war has its tragedies, it leaves us with lessons to contemplate over the importance of our history.

  4. Elizabeth B.

    I think this a good example of Total War. The museum was targeted out of rage and unrest, trying to hit the culture of the people where it hurts. Not only were people targeted during this time, but also their beliefs, monuments, and their history. I think that while this is tragedy it has become a common strategy amongst countries/entities in conflict. This is a consequence of war and while it is unsettling, it can be used as a way to teach history and prevent tragedies of this nature in the future.

  5. Sarah Wilson

    I find it very tragic that such valuable and historic pieces of art had to have been lost in this war. I also find it rather disturbing that the violence was purposefully aimed at this museum because it caused a great deal of damage to the culture and history of these people. As unfortunate as these events are, it is important to realize that these countries are standing up for themselves, and that events like this open your eyes to what really happens during war and teaches us a valuable lesson on how important our history is.

  6. Nigi Roberts

    I often wonder what happens to artwork during time of war. I know that buildings and properties are often destroyed and looted during these conflicts. But knowing what we known now about the importance of artwork and understanding our on past, I wonder if there are particular guidelines to insure the protection of artwork. I guess when people are intrenched in there quest to win and destroy their opponent, artwork takes a back seat (so to speak) to their conflicts. I also wonder who are these art poachers that often prays upon the vulnerability of a county during war? Besides money, do they have other motives? This article is a clear reminder of the many cons of war and its damaging effects on art. It is often sad to see a country and its history being destroy. But, more importantly the article also points out the beauty of those who really appreciate art for what it is and are dedicated to restoring and reviving damage works of art, even after the wars.

  7. James Crisp

    It is such a sad thing to hear about famous sites and artifacts being destroyed or stolen in times of war, but it is hard justifying saving art at the expense of hamstringing or endagering one’s own forces. Arguments can be made in all sorts of ways about it, and beyond the obvious, general concensus that war is bad, it is hard to really agree on any one argument. Culture is vitally important to a society, and as some would say, the best way to wipe out a civilization is to destroy its culture and history, and there is some validity to that, but after a war, if the culture survives, even if its has been culturally devestated and lost much of its historical sites and artifacts, it still has its memories and the ability to rebuild and restore. It is of course, truly a shame when those artifacts get destroyed, but sacrifices have to be made. At least when an artifact is stolen, it has a chance to be recovered, or at least find its way to a collector who will cherish it, where as if it is destroyed, it is simply gone in all but memory.

  8. Karlie F.

    I hate to think that so much history and beauty has been destroyed without us ever having seen it. War is a constant just as much as art is, and it seems like one has the tendency to desecrate the other. It is such a shame that most, if not all, pieces of art have been touched and lost to time and war. But, on the other hand, war is just as much a part of the history of a culture as is art, and it has left its mark as its own piece of work.

  9. Sarah C.

    It’s really a shame that they destroyed a museum that held so much history and art. Often in times of war people can distract themselves from their troubles by means of escapism, and a perfect way to do that is to visit a museum or somewhere that holds art and beauty. When everything around you is so awful and ugly, it’s nice to have somewhere pretty and calm to be. They took that away from these people and that’s really a sad thing. Not too mention the art that was probably irreplaceable is now gone.

  10. Olivia Smith

    This is tragic that this happens to art. If we do not protect and preserve art, the only records that it ever existed will be documentation. The destruction of museums really saddens me because we lost so must history because of a silly war. I believe that war should never result to such extreme results, such as the destruction of such sacred items. I’m glad this article highlights people who value art as much as I do and are devoted to the restoration of this art.

  11. James Moore

    If as if the condition of art in a time of war is something of a two-edged sword. As these two articles clearly indicate, the chaos of war makes it very easy for artworks to be destroyed or lost. Looting of art museums in a time of war is certainly commonplace. At the same time, the experience of war can also be an inspiration for the creation of very powerful art works. A countless number of paintings, songs, poems, and stories have been written about war and have been inspired by it. Art is important in wartime because it can help communicate how serious and terrible war can be.

  12. Jacie Housman

    It is devastating how much art work is lost during times of war, but like we discussed in class when faced with saving a piece of art or a child I think the answer would be very clear on what to save. That is somewhat of a dramatic example, but it is valid. There are so many pieces of art that have been destroyed, but as mentioned above war has also budded the creation of so many beautiful works.

  13. Christine Hachem

    It is incomprehensible how much art we have lost overtime due to looting and raids of war. However, the pieces of art we have recovered and kept tell a story about a culture that is now lost. What really stuck with me from our discussions in class is how little the scared places or pieces of art are being guarded. We talked about ISIS and how they have a couple places they intend to bomb or destroy because of hatred toward an opposing religion and how no one can stop them. It is very sad to know that the world could lose such precious pieces of art or architecture because of one group’s intense hatred.

  14. Stephanie Wismer

    Reading these articles is almost painful. Actually, it’s not almost painful–it really is painful! It breaks by heart to think of all the invaluable works of art that have been lost because of looting and war. Reading this article makes me think of how I feel when the horses die during a war movie. I’m always like, “Hey! The horse didn’t do anything wrong!” And that’s the same way that I feel about the art. It didn’t take sides in the war! I think that this is the most illuminating quote from the article:

    “Plans have been drawn up by the neighborhood council to develop the area for tourism. Mardeisker said that although water, sewer and electrical problems take top priority right now, he would like to see the visitor center and museum refurbished, and a hotel built next to the site — things he felt would vastly improve the economy in his impoverished rural municipality.”

    As disappointing as it is that art is looted and damaged in war, when the deed is done, people have to focus on fixing the necessities–like water and electricity–before they can work and repairing the cultural damage. However, that definitely doesn’t mean that the museums and galleries shouldn’t ever be repaired!

    I think that we need to reevaluate how our respect for art disappears during times of tension–looting and damaging of art should not be an accepted part of wartime.

  15. Haley Harkins

    During war, art is not taken into account in any form; buildings, museums, and historical sites that are seen as art by the art community, are often destroyed and overlooked during war times. I see this as a true tragedy. So much of history and culture is interpreted through art and if it is destroyed, we lose that knowledge. Art is something all cultures have in common, every inhabited place on Earth has some type of art that is special because of what it represents, so in knowing that, I wonder why so often we destroy it and its significance? As respect to culture and history, more of an effort should be made to protect art.

  16. Khadijah Johnson

    I think it is unfortunate that we lose precious pieces of art during war . Some people fail to realize that a lot of the surviving art work we see today represented the places of their origin . Today we seem to take a lot of artwork for granted. That being said we don’t protect it like they did during the early renaissance for example. I think that art work that special should be carefully stored away in case a war was to start. For instance it can be stored in a bunker . For example world war 2 soldiers saved the Mona Lisa and the Ghent Altarpiece from the Nazi’s .


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