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Ensure your couriers handle with extra care

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I'd like to issue a dire warning.

Last year I was invited to exhibit at the Barcelona School of Architecture (etsaB) and the exhibition opened in October 2001. Due to illness, I was unable to attend the opening and did not see the show.

When the material was returned to me, in December, I was dismayed to find that the boxes were badly dented and all the glass in the frames was broken, as well as the glass protecting a threedimensional Frank Lloyd Wright item which had severely damaged the work.

In addition, all the expensive mounts where drawings were unframed had been punctured by pins; presumably the Catalans do not know about double-sided tape.

Clearly the school had not employed couriers experienced in transporting art works, but some cheap alternative who had just thrown the stuff about.

Despite the school's assurance that the material had been fully insured, a visit from the loss adjuster who inspected the damage and numerous letters, faxes and e-mails to Barcelona, there has now been a deafening silence for more than two months.

I have learned a painful lesson.Make sure transportation is carried out by bona-fide couriers and get copies of the insurance documents before letting anything go anywhere.

Louis Hellman, London W3

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