CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

American Museum Directors Vote to Allow the Sale of Art to Care for Collections

On 30 September, the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD) announced a change to its policy to approve the use of funds from deaccessioned art for direct care of objects in a museum’s collection. The new rule changes a long-held policy that prohibited American museums from using the funds from deaccessioned works to pay their bills. The rule had been relaxed during the pandemic, giving institutions two years to use those funds to maintain their collections while dealing with financial hardship and declining visitor numbers.

Since then, museum directors have differed on whether it is time to make the loosening of that policy permanent. A majority of the association’s voting members have now decided to do exactly that – with some restrictions. Of the 199 voting members (directors of art museums in the United States, Canada, and Mexico), 109 voted in favor of the policy, while 21 voted against it. The remaining institutions did not vote.

More information about the rule and its exact implications can be found in the AAMD’s announcement and in an article in the New York Times.