Monday, October 22, 2012

New Law Review Article: In Museums We Trust

Sara Tam, 3L at Fordham Law School, has just published In Museums We Trust: Analyzing the Mission of Museums, Deaccessioning Policies, and the Public Trust, in the Fordham Urban Journal. Here's the abstract.
This Note demonstrates that the emphasis on collections management policies undermines a museum’s mission to provide public access to its collections and exhibitions, whether the emphasis originates from museum professional organizations, legislative and judicial action, or media criticism. It highlights the relationship between museums and the public, exploring the museum’s duty to the public, the public’s support of museums, and the public’s expectations of museums. Defining this relationship contributes significantly to shaping museum standards. This Note provides a comprehensive examination of the varying perspectives on the legal and ethical duties currently imposed on museums.

Part I provides an overview of the museum’s mission to collect and exhibit art for the benefit of the public. It also describes the historical development of museum standards and deaccessioning policies. Part II evaluates the effectiveness of current and proposed policies on deaccessioning and the use of deaccessioning sales proceeds, as well as the theories supporting those policies. Part III posits that museums can be trusted to develop and enforce standards that reflect equally the public interest in museums themselves, their collections, and the educational experiences museums offer. Therefore, this Note suggests that legislative intervention is unnecessary to protect the public interest in museums and their collections.


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Overview of New New York Deaccessioning Rules

Although the new rules were approved last year, it’s always good to have a concise overview.
New rules on deaccessioning were approved by the New York Board of Regents on May 17, 2011, and went into effect on June 8, 2011. The NY Board of Regents oversees most museums in the state that were formed after 1889. If a museum violates these rules, it risks losing its charter.

Via Patterson Belknap.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Corcoran Will Not Deaccession Art to Plug Its Budget Hole

At least two important budget questions were answered: The museum is not, has not, and will not consider deaccessioning works to plug its budget hole, Roth assured. And the $20.5 million made from the sale of the lease with Carr Properties for the parking lot$4 million of which it has already received, with another $10.5 million coming within the next two years—went toward immediate cash flow.

Via Washington City Paper.