Friday, October 16, 2020

Latest on the Baltimore Museum Deaccessioning

The LA Times: "A group of 23 prominent supporters of the Baltimore Museum of Art, including former trustees at the BMA and the nearby Walters Art Museum, has written to Maryland Atty. Gen. Brian Frosh and Secretary of State John C. Wobensmith to demand that they intervene to stop the impending sale of paintings from the storied museum’s collection."

Christopher Knight calls it "a blistering and closely argued six-page letter." Tyler Green has thoughts here. Lee Rosenbaum is here.

The museum's response -- including that "deaccessioning artworks from a museum's collection is a standard practice" -- can be read here.

The Baltimore Sun's editorial board weighs in here: "it’s an understandably painful pill for some to swallow. And change in general is uncomfortable. But we prefer to think of it not as closing a door on certain works by these white artists of the past, but instead opening the door to including diverse artists of the future, who would not have had the opportunity to be seen and appreciated in the same way in any other time in history, along with the new audience they could attract."

Two museum curators defended the move here. Background here.