Museums and the Dilemmas of Deaccessioning
Article from: TDM 5 (2013), in Art and Heritage Disputes in International and Comparative Law
One of the most controversial aspects of museum governance has been the practice of deaccessioning, whereby museums sell or otherwise part with possession of objects forming part of their collections. Though such transfers are usually legal, they can sometimes engender heated debate. Much of the controversy surrounding deaccessioning by museums seems to arise from the perception that they are public institutions impressed with the role of protecting and preserving their collections intact for future generations. However, the enormous market prices for certain works of art in recent years ...