Elisabetta Povoledo this morning has a piece in the New York Times on the ARCA Masters program. There is an interview with a couple of the students, and as I pointed out earlier today, this program is the first of its kind; and in a way it is surprising it took this long to create. I imagine a number of other organizations may have had similar kinds of ideas but never really got around to creating the program or getting it off the ground. Of course there are a number of other workships and education initiatives, but those can be scattered and frustrating to keep up with. As I told the students, I’m jealous of the opportunity they have to listen to the speakers and instructors they have lined up this summer.
Here’s an excerpt:
Universities around the world offer individual classes on art crime and related subjects: fakes and forgeries; intellectual- and cultural-property protection; looting. But Mr. Charney maintains that his program is the first to provide an interdisciplinary approach, and several scholars of art crime concurred, including Ngarino Ellis at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, who said the group “could make some important contributions to the awareness of art crime internationally.” The degree is not formally recognized by an accredited university, though Mr. Charney said he was in discussion with various institutions. (Tuition alone costs about $7,000.)
The first class of students includes art historians, lawyers, museum professionals, art conservators, a private investigator, even a retired United States Secret Service agent, an array that suggests that the subject has broad appeal.
“I was always interested in art, and now I can incorporate that interest in my business,” said John Vezeris of Annapolis, Md., who retired from the Secret Service and opened a strategic security and risk management firm.
For his thesis he wants to apply an analytical approach to structures at risk, like churches, and find the best — and cheapest — way to keep them secure. It was, he said, an area with a lot of potential for business.