Thursday, August 07, 2008

Here we go again?

Tyler Green spots what may be the next great university deaccessioning battle: the University of Iowa has authorized a study to determine the value of its 1943 Pollock mural. Story here. "Regent Michael Gartner [who requested the study] ... said the painting was estimated to be worth more than $150 million several years ago. ... Gartner said he is 'not proposing the painting be sold,' but that it would be good for the regents and the university to be aware of what options are out there as UI faces major expenses in flood recovery. The proposal came at the end of a UI presentation of its flood recovery efforts. Damages have been estimated at more than $231 million with much of that on the arts campus."

Lee Rosenbaum says "appraising the painting can only mean that the university is thinking of monetizing it, whatever is now being said for public consumption."

Michael Judge wrote about the piece, and its rescue from the flood, in the Wall Street Journal last month.