Art Lovers to the Met: Don’t Turn Old Masters into Cash to Balance the Books

So many Madonnas, so much Baby Jesus . . . Why not sell one, the Met ponders. Pictured, left: Madonna and Child, c. 1326, by Simone Martini. Tempera on wood, gold ground. Right: Madonna and Child, c. 1290–1300, by Duccio di Buoninsegna. Tempera on gold and wood. (Metropolitan Museum of Art/Open Access)
Is America’s greatest museum looking for an easy way out of its COVID money crunch?

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE L ast week, Max Hollein, the director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, said the museum was considering selling work from its collection to help it balance its budget. “It would be inappropriate for us not to consider it,” he said, “when we’re still in this foggy situation.” The “foggy situation” he cites is the financial mess — everywhere except among the very rich and the biggest corporations — caused by the COVID fiasco. I don’t think the honchos at the Met ever have giddy, spontaneous moments with reporters. The museum’s considering it seriously, if it hasn’t already budgeted the income.


(Keith Bedford/Reuters)


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