Monday, January 11, 2010

Works for me

The other day, I wondered about Richard Feigen's reference to "unrestricted paintings" at the Barnes. In response, Lee Rosenbaum emails a link to her 2004 NYT Barnes op-ed, which includes the following:

"[T]here are a number of steps the Barnes can take to make it possible to survive financially in Merion. .. The foundation could begin by selling unused or little-used assets. Chief among these: the foundation's 137-acre property in Chester County .... Auctioning off some of the foundation's ancillary collections -- some 5,200 objects and documents -- could also generate cash. ... While art museums are supposed to use sale proceeds solely for acquisitions, not operations, the Barnes considers itself an educational institution (and it doesn't acquire new works). In addition, legal strictures against selling the Barnes Foundation's holdings apply only to works on view in the galleries."

That's helpful, thanks. But is it me, or is Lee suggesting here (and Richard Feigen suggesting in his Art Newspaper piece) deaccessioning (if only just a smidgen) as a way to keep the Barnes from having to move?