Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Rose Art Museum Trial Dates Set

Mark your calendars. The trial dates for the Rose Art Museum debacle have been set for June 29 and July 1, 2010. Brandeis University's The Justice has more.

St. Lawrence University Art Gallery to Deaccession 177 Artworks

St. Lawrence University's Richard F. Brush Art Gallery is auctioning 177 works valued at upwards of $200,000. The college said it is deaccessioning the art from its catalogue in order to make more room for other works in its 7,000-piece permanent collection. The Watertown Daily News has a little bit more here.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Furloughs and Deaccessioning at the Indianapolis Museum of Art

According to the Chicago Tribune, "nearly 300 staff members at the Indianapolis Museum of Art will have to take an unpaid week off during the coming months in the latest cutback for the museum. Spokeswoman Katie Zarich say the furloughs, along with less spending on contractors, advertising and travel, are needed as the museum makes a 5.5 percent cut from this year's $25.5 million budget." Read the Museum's Budget Reduction Statement here.

The website, Art Knowledge News reports that,

The Indianapolis Museum of Art has embarked on a systematic evaluation of its collection since 2007 to identify candidates for deaccessioning (e.g. sale, transfer, or exchange). All objects proposed for deaccessioning are subject to the criteria and procedures outlined in the IMA's Deaccession Policy. Since 2007, the furniture, antiquities, textiles, American painting, European painting and contemporary collections have been reviewed and assessed. The decorative arts, Asian art and African collections are currently under review with additional works proposed for deaccessioning to be presented for approval at the May and December 2009 Collections Committee and Board of Governors meetings.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Brandeis' Motion to Dismiss Not Approved

According to Brandeis University's newspaper, The Justice, Brandeis' "motion to dismiss a lawsuit seeking to preserve the Rose Art Museum's collection was not approved at a hearing that took place" yesterday. Judge Stahlin has allowed the plaintiffs to remain a part of the lawsuit in order to show that "their gifts to the Rose should be returned to them under theories known as equitable reversion and fraud." However, the University would have to contact the Attorney General's Office to give them a minimum of 30 days' notice before selling art. This is a bit odd, but it seems, and this is a conjecture, that Brandeis may be allowed to sell its art collection, just not those art objects previously donated to the university by the plaintiffs in this case.

More from The Justice here.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Blanden Memorial Art Museum to Proceed with Deaccessioning

After meeting some internal board requirements and federal requests, the Blanden Memorial Art Museum will continue with its planned deaccessioning.

Dr. Matt Maggio, vice president of the museum's board, said leaders of the city-owned art gallery have talked about having such a sale for 10 years. He added that the auction has been actively planned for three years and four months.

After voting to bar themselves and family members from buying any art at auction, the board also removed eight pieces from auction.

The withdrawal of those pieces came after the U.S. General Services Administration contacted City Manager David Fierke on Thursday and asked the museum to refrain from selling any Depression-era artwork commissioned by the government. That agency requested that any such unwanted works be sent to the federal government.

More from Fort Dodge, Iowa's Messenger.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

"The sale of assets could eventually include the sale of artwork from the Rose Art Museum"

Anti-deaccessionists will not like this, but would they really prefer a boarded-up university with artworks in storage?

The Brandeis Hoot reports,

The university’s latest Fiscal Year 2010 budget projection is “a little worse” than last May’s projection, in part due to potential problems in raising restricted funds for the university’s operating budget, Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance Jeff Apfel announced at yesterday’s faculty meeting. Such changes in the budget, while small, only serve to remind the university of the many budget cuts that are still to come to help balance the university’s budget in the years leading up to 2014.

Possible solutions: dipping into its reserve fund, but that would only take the university through 2013. The other alternative: "the sale of artwork from the Rose Art Museum."

According to The Hoot, even if Brandeis increases enrollment by 400 students (impacting class size and professorial teaching loads) and lays off 35 staff members, Brandeis will still face a budget gap.