Wednesday, March 18, 2009

"Overall, we would much prefer the New York legislature keeping its nose out of private sector business" (UPDATED)

Jack Siegel, author of the Desktop Guide for Nonprofit Directors, Officers, and Advisors, is not impressed with the NY anti-deaccessioning bill. He says "we can understand why the New York Legislature would stick its nose into museum business if it is funding grants to those museums, but we don’t like this legislation to the extent it applies to private, self-supporting museums. The state is acting as if the artwork is public property."

He also seems to endorse the Ellis Rule: "we think a better approach would be to permit small museums to sell works to other museums to cover operating expenses. That keeps the art work public and allows small museums the opportunity to better capitalize themselves."

UPDATE: Similar thoughts from Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento: "Wow. It baffles the mind that during these dire economic times state legislators would be more preoccupied with saving one or two Warhols than with drafting and passing bills that would lower crime rates in the state, increase jobs, and updating our faltering subway system."