Temporary exhibitions
Looted Treasures. Gold from Ukraine
Suurgildi hoone
Looted Treasures. Gold from Ukraine
24.1.2024 - 28.1.2024

Looted treasures. Gold from Ukraine - only five days in the Great Guild Hall!

In 2018, customs officers at the Luhamaa border crossing point discovered cultural property hidden in a truck that entered from Russia – a total of 274 items, including coins and gold and silver items. After examination and evaluation, confiscation, criminal investigation, court order, conservation and the determination of the country of origin of the objects, this precious cultural property from Eastern and Southern Ukraine is now on display in this exhibition.

The international black market for cultural property is one of the largest illegal markets in the world, along with drugs, arms and human trafficking. In a war situation, the looting of museums and sites of discovery and the trafficking of objects become intensified. This has also happened in Ukraine.

With the exhibition, we want to raise awareness of the problem of the illicit trade in cultural property and show the cultural heritage of Ukraine which comes from the regions most affected by the war, including Crimea.

At the end of the exhibition, Estonia will return the objects to Ukraine. 

The exhibition team

Content: Ivar Leimus (Estonian History Museum), Aive Viljus (Tallinn University), Janika Turu (National Heritage Board), Nele Kangert (National Heritage Board), Elika Brosman (Tax and Customs Board)

Content editors: Ulla Kadakas (Estonian History Museum), Krista Sarv (Estonian History Museum), Liina Jänes (Ministry of Culture)

Communication and support team: Eve Rand (National Heritage Board), Signe Friedenthal (National Heritage Board), Helene Tedre (Estonian History Museum), Karin Ulvik (Tax and Customs Board), Liisa-Johanna Lukk (Ministry of Culture)

Project manager: Kristi Leps (Estonian History Museum)

Photographer: Vahur Lõhmus (Estonian History Museum)

Graphic design: Aime Andresson (Estonian History Museum)

Installation of objects: Villu Plink

Conservator: Aive Viljus (Tallinn University)

Language editor: Hille Saluäär

Translation: Alias Tõlkeagentuur

Printing house: Digiprint

Thanks to: Embassy of Ukraine in Estonia, National History Museum of Ukraine and Institute of Archaeology of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.