Tuesday, August 21, 2012

"I have a lot more faith in donors than in the AAMD and its selectively, inconsistently enforced policies that generally apply the myopic rule of one-size-fits-all."

I'm making former Crystal Bridges curator Chris Crosman an honorary member of my Museum Directors Hall of Fame.  At Lee Rosenbaum's blog, he argues that "Fisk needs to be unshackled from patronizing, museum establishment-imposed bonds that do not address Fisk's unique circumstances and rich history."  "Fisk's future," he says, "must be its own to determine."

He joins Hugh Davies, who called "B.S." on the "held in trust" argument; Richard Armstrong, who called for an "infusion of pragmatism" (another way of saying enough with the myopic rule of one-size-fits-all); Christine Miles; David Gordon; and of course Gresham Riley, after whom the Riley Wing of the Hall of Fame is named, who persuasively argued that the AAMD policy is "an exercise in smoke and mirrors."

One striking thing about the Hall of Fame members is that no one on the other side ever actually engages with their arguments.  Instead, from time to time the Deaccession Police gather their pitchforks and do their little "held in trust" dance and pretend that no one has noticed that their prissy fatwa makes absolutely no sense.