From our ICOMON colleagues:

It has been brought to ICOM’s attention that there are some websites and individuals pretending to be ICOM and claim to provide, for a fee, fake certificates of authenticity or allowing free import and export, particularly concerning African cultural goods. False collector cards are sometimes offered as well.

The scammers claim that these certificates exonerate the holder from the obligation to present any other document such as the ownership title, the export license and certificate, the certificate of expertise, the certificate of authenticity, etc. They act most often by phone, email, and through fraudulent sites usurping the name, logo and appearance of ICOM’s website.

ICOM, the international association of museums and museum professionals, does not participate in any way in negotiations in the art market. ICOM does not issue any certificate of expertise, origin, authenticity, registration or circulation for cultural property. No international organisation has a mandate in this area. Only competent national authorities are authorised to issue this type of document.

This scam has already claimed many victims, especially concerning Cameroon. We urge you to be extremely vigilant, and to respect the national and international legislation in force when you carry out transactions involving cultural goods.
UNESCO is also a victim of this scam and has published an alert on its website.

Be very careful of:

  • websites that mention several associations or international organisations in their URLs (eg ICOM and UNESCO)
  • persons who get in touch with you proposing expensive documents: ICOM does not issue any!

UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Protection and Promotion of Museums and Collections, their Diversity and their Role in Society


It’s never too late to remember the UMAC community that this remarkable recommendation exists since November 2015 to promote museums and their communities all over the world. In five languages.

UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Protection and Promotion of Museums and Collections, their Diversity and their Role in Society (2015)


Caves & Ice Age Art in the Swabian Jura are World Heritage too!

The Caves and Ice Age Art in the Swabian Jura, Germany, whose collections are at the Museum of the University of Tübingen, was also listed this weekend as World Heritage by UNESCO.

40.000 Jahre alte Figur eines Wildpferds aus der Vogelherdhöhle

Read more (in German).

This means that 2017 is already a fantastic year for university heritage in Europe.

Many congratulations to this wonderful and well deserved recognition!

University of Strasbourg is World Heritage!

The main building of the University of Strasbourg, the neo-Renaissance Palais Universitaire, constructed between 1879 and 1884 and designed by German architect Otto Warth (Photo F. Zvardon, University of Strasbourg archives, courtesy Jardin des Sciences)

The UNESCO World Heritage Committee, presently meeting in Krakow, Poland, just announced that the Neustadt — the late 19th and early 20th century urban development of the city of Strasbourg, which includes at its very heart the University of Strasbourg (the University Palace depicted in the photo, but also the Astronomical Observatory, the Botanic Garden, the Zoology Museum and Jardin des Sciences, and several other buildings) — just entered the World Heritage List.

See more here.

UMAC is extremely glad and proud of these wonderful news and congratulates the city of Strasbourg, the University of Strasbourg, and all partners involved for this successful and entirely deserved recognition.