"The campaign to raise $68 million and retain Thomas Eakins' monumental painting The Gross Clinic in Philadelphia has reached about one-third of its goal," reports Stephan Salisbury in today's Philadelphia Inquirer. Carol Vogel puts the figure at $23 million.
Salisbury also reports that Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell plans to contact the buyers to discuss a possible extension of the Dec. 26 deadline to match the offer.
UPDATE: At his Illicit Cultural Property Blog, Derek Fincham posts about the city's move to designate the painting as historic:
"This is an interesting turn of events, and is the only example I'm aware of a city preventing the export of a work of art. Many nations attempt to prevent the export of works of art, but I am aware of no individual cities preventing the removal of an important work. The US is among the few nations in the world which has no export restrictions on works, due in part to its status as the largest art importer in the World. It's quite interesting to see an individual city make make similar claims to that of source nations such as Peru, Mexico or Egypt. The potential litigation in this case should be very interesting to watch unfold, if the trustees are unable to reach a satisfactory resolution with the city."
That's quite right, though as I mentioned in an earlier post, this is not the first time Philadelphia has done this. The same process was used to kill the sale of the Maxfield Parrish/Louis Comfort Tiffany mural Dream Garden to Steve Wynn in 1998.