Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Behold, the Man!

A reader e-mailed me last week (when I was in gorgeous Barcelona) and asked why I didn't update this blog more often. He pointed out, rightly, that there was much writing going on relating to deaccessioning. I agree. So why the slothness?

Well, for starters, although there is quite a bit of writing on deaccessioning it certainly isn't good, much less rigorous. Put a chimpanzee in front of a laptop and in due time he, or she (for the politically correct), will type the words "deaccessioning," "wrong," "bad," and if we're lucky, and feed him, or her, enough bananas we may even get "in the public trust." Like much (critical) art writing these days, the writing on deaccessioning is heavy on the cream and light on the caffeine.

So, take it as my philanthropic duty to not pass on meaningless diatribe on why art is so precious and why art is not a business; on why art belongs to a community and why it shouldn't be treated as an asset or commodity. In due time these folk will enter the age of enlightenment, perhaps not due in part to their own rational capacities, but rather due to the economic forces that some of us have come to accept as devastating and unprecedented.

Until then, I will point you to the man who I believe plays with a full deck of cards and isn't missing a single screw. His name is Donn Zaretsky, from the Art Law Blog, and his new, precise, and RATIONAL argument (not against deaccessioning, but rather for an expanded application of it) can now be read in the recent issue of Art in America.

Enjoy, and stop asking for crumbs. I'll post when the pie is ready!