Thursday, February 24, 2011

"The sales are designed to secure the fiscal health of the institution (and certainly not earmarked for future acquisitions)"

Artnet's Walter Robinson reports that a German museum has been selling off some work, including a $13 million Richter, and does not plan to use the proceeds to buy more art.

What? That can't be right. Don't they know it's repulsive to sell art and not use the proceeds to buy more art? Do the Deaccession Police not have an office in Germany?

Look, this is a reminder that when people run around ranting and raving about the evils of deaccessioning, all they're really doing is enforcing a set of guidelines a private organization has adopted, for their own institutional reasons, and in their own self-interest. It's not some immutable moral principle. It's just the way one group of museum directors would like the world to be. Other museum groups have different views (in Germany apparently, as well as in the U.K.).

As I've said before, can we at least take it down a notch?