Monday, August 18, 2014

Did the Deaccession Police Kill the Corcoran?

In his decision today, the Judge noted that, "throughout this proceeding, [opponents of the plan] have argued that the Corcoran can address this [financial] shortfall by selling some of the more than 17,000 pieces in the Corcoran's collection."  But he said he was "less optimistic ... about the likelihood of success" of this proposal.

Why?  Because SANCTIONS.  "This proposal," he wrote, "has a serious downside.  It is undisputed that the AAM and the AAMD can impose, and have imposed, sanctions on museums that have sold art to pay for operating expenses."  He quotes the Director of the National Academy Museum as describing the effect of these policies as:  "sanctions, and you're dead."  "Thus," he wrote, "this Court believes there are substantial risks associated with the Intervenors' proposal to de-accession art to pay for the renovation of the Flagg Building and to pay some of the Corcoran's other operating expenses."

I hope they're happy at Deaccession Police headquarters.