Collections and Deaccessioning: Three Volumes | eBook Edition

"Timely, thought-provoking, urgent… about who museums serve and how, the needs of museum audiences, and what it means to care for culture." 
Cara Starke, Executive Director, Pulitzer Arts Foundation

This groundbreaking collection of three books is available for immediate download as a convenient, elegant eBook at this very special launch price!
Want the paperbacks? You'll find them here.

Collections and Deaccessioning in a Post-Pandemic World is about far more than deaccessioning. It's about how museums will be - must be - different after Covid-19. About a transformed environment, both social and financial, and museums' total response to it. In a changed and charged reality, deaccessioning is one element of a future in which issues of social justice, inequality, race, pay and decolonisation will impact collections as never before.

Collections and Deaccessioning in a Post-Pandemic World is a major new resource of over 900 pages which draws on the experience and thinking of some of the world's most experienced and respected museum professionals, with a Foreword by Melody Kanschat and Antoniette M Guglielmo of the Museum Leadership Institute.

Contributors include:

• Christine Anagnos | Director, AAMD
Christopher Bedford | Director, Baltimore Museum of Art
Thomas Campbell | Director, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
Michael Conforti | Former Director, Clark Art Institute
Adrian Ellis | Director, AEA Consulting
Kaywin Feldman | Director, National Gallery of Art
Linda Harrison | Director, Newark Museum Art
Glenn Lowry | Director, MoMA 

    It consists of three volumes:
    1. Conversations with Museum Directors
    2. Towards a New Reality
    3. Case Studies 

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      1. Agustín Arteaga | Dallas Museum of Art

      2. Christopher Bedford | The Baltimore Museum of Art

      3. Betsy Bradley | Mississippi Museum of Art
      4. Thomas Campbell | Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
      5. Kaywin Feldman | National Gallery of Art
, Washington DC
      6. David Gordon | Former Director and CEO, Milwaukee Art Museum
      7. Linda Harrison | Newark Museum of Art
      8. Glenn D Lowry | The Museum of Modern Art, New York
      9. Courtney J Martin
 | Yale Center for British Art, New Haven
      10. Scott Stulen | Philbrook Museum of Art
      11. Joseph Thompson | Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA)
      12. Roxana Velásquez | The San Diego Museum of Art


      1. Object Impermanence: Ethics, Endowments and Deaccessioning
      2. Balancing the Needs of Today's Visitors Against Those of Future Generations
      3. Optimizing Museum Asset Allocation
      4. Understanding Disposal as an Ethical Crisis Response
      5. Does the Museum Need a Single Wagon Wheel Without Provenance?

      6. Deaccessioning and Disposal: A Registrar’s Perspective
      7. Bricks and Mortar Collections: Collecting, Assessing and Deaccessioning Buildings
      8. The Illusory Public Trust in Art
      9. Prioritizing the Public Domain in Deaccessioning
      10. A Search for Direction: Finding Executive Leadership after a Deaccession Controversy

      11. Deaccessioning, Repatriation and a Global Reckoning
      12. Restitution, Social Justice and the Benin Bronzes
      13. Museums in the Time of Covid and BLM: Proactive Repatriation
      14. Reframing Disposals: Building Confidence in Transfers and Removals
      15. The Collection Ranking Project at Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields
      16. Repurposing: A Positive Result of Deaccessioning

      17. The Other End of the Telescope: Deaccessioning as a Public Good
      18. Collateralization: Financial Stability Without Deaccessioning
      19. Art Investment Collections: Considerations for Museums
      20. When Deaccessioning Isn't Enough: Closing the Museum

      21. It's Not About Selling Art, It's About How You Use The Money
      22. The Case Against Deaccessioning Art to Support Operating and Capital Budgets
      23. Progressive Deaccessioning
      24. Where It Happens: The Perspective of a Museum Trustee
      25. Three Theses on Deaccessioning and Survival
      26. Deaccessioning and Protections for Objects and People: The Fair Museum Jobs Stance

      1. Origins of the Professional Standards
      2. Sample Policies on the Direct Care of Collections


      1. Reflections on Deaccessioning Braque's Music from The Phillips Collection
      2. Much Ado About Shrimps: Everhart Museum Deaccessioning
      3. Randolph College: Act Three
      4. Financial Stability vs. Donor Restrictions: Fisk University
      5. Financing the Past and Finding the Future: Delaware Art Museum
      6. What Matters Most: Building the Future of the Berkshire Museum

      7. The Shuttering of Philadelphia's Attic
      8. The Best of Times, The Worst of Times: Detroit Institute of Arts
      9. Sparking Institutional Change: Deaccessioning at The Baltimore Museum of Art
      10. Picture Perfect: Everson Museum of Art

      Stefanie S JandlStefanie S Jandl is a writer and independent museum professional. She co-edited the three-volume Handbook for Academic Museums and has written on diverse museum topics including academic museums, deaccessioning, unionization, and the Mellon College and University Art Museum program. Most recently, she has written for The Art Newspaper. Jandl also writes on topics combining art and food, and contributed to The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets. A former Andrew W. Mellon Curator of Academic Programs at the Williams College Museum of Art, she has over 20 years of museum experience that also includes exhibition planning and collections management. Jandl holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Southern California and an MA in the History of Art from Williams College. She is now at work on a book about the Berkshire Museum's controversial sale of art.

      Mark S GoldMark S Gold is a partner in the Massachusetts law firm of Smith Green & Gold, LLP. He holds a Master’s in Museum Studies from Harvard University, degrees in Economics and International Studies from The American University, and a law degree from Georgetown University. His practice includes business and corporate law, venture capital and traditional financing, and non-profit and museum law. Gold presently serves on the Board of Directors of Community Legal Aid, Inc., providing legal services to low-income populations. He has served as legal counsel to the Berkshire Museum in connection with its deaccessioning and sale in 2018 and, most recently, the Everson Museum in connection with its deaccessioning and sale of Jackson Pollock’s Red Composition (Painting 1946) to support the acquisition of art by artists of color, women, and other under-represented groups, and to establish an endowment for direct care of the collection. 

      Anne Pasternak | Director, Brooklyn Museum

      At last a book that interrogates the role of collections and deaccessions in museums at this crucial time for questioning all orthodoxies and paving a smarter, brighter path forward. [On Conversations with Museum Directors]

      Steven Lubar | Professor, American Studies, History, History of Art and Architecture, Brown University
      In these conversations some of America’s most distinguished art museum directors wrestle with the ethical concerns arising from new rules about how the proceeds of deaccessioned art can be spent. What makes the conversations so fascinating is the way that they open up into all of the interconnected challenges facing museums today. Come for the deaccessioning debate; stay for thoughtful reflections on the big questions of racial reckonings, colonial roots, and inequality, and for insight into the ways museum directors are thinking about the balance of collections, research, public programs, and community connections. [On Conversations with Museum Directors]

      Cara Starke | Executive Director, Pulitzer Arts Foundation
      This timely, thought-provoking book opens up pressing conversations about the role of museums in our society, about what it might take for them to adapt to our era of inequality, racial injustice, and social reckoning. In twelve insightful exchanges, Jandl and Gold ask museum leaders to consider some of the most urgent and controversial questions in the field — about who museums serve and how, the needs of museum audiences, and what it means to care for culture. [On Conversations with Museum Directors]

      Sebastián Encina | Chair, Collections Stewardship Professional Network, American Alliance of Museums
      Deaccessioning is often seen as a scary, anxiety-inducing topic, but it can also be an important tool for museums. The authors of Collections and Deaccessioning: Towards a New Reality take a deep dive into the topic, bringing the field essential information and making thoughtful cases for why deaccessioning is useful and sometimes necessary, and when maintaining the status quo is optimal. With this work, museum leaders can make confident decisions building off the experience and perspectives of their seasoned museum colleagues[On Towards a New Reality]

      Andrew Saluti | Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator, Museum Studies, Syracuse University
      At a time when our collecting institutions finds themselves facing a paradigm shift in how we define the museum’s responsibilities and goals within our communities, conversations about how to approach collection building and management has never been more critical - or divisive. This text offers an invaluable and objective resource for both the academic discourse and the practical reality that will shape the future professional standards. It will certainly be an asset to my curriculum. [On Towards a New Reality]

      Sally Yerkovich | Author, A Practical Guide to Museum Ethics
      Towards a New Reality explores the reasons for the controversy arising about deaccessioning and disposal in museums and raises questions about the purpose of these common practices in a post-pandemic world.  It explores issues that museums are grappling with at this moment as they re-examine their mission and priorities in the face of demands for equitable pay, challenges to current governance structures and practices, and pressures to decolonize their collections and operations. Jandl and Gold provide a thorough and provocative exploration of the subjects in a manner that will educate those unfamiliar with the issues, offer guidance for museums struggling with decisions, and provide fodder for further debate. [On Towards a New Reality]

      Peter Frumkin | Heyer Chair in Social Policy, The University of Pennsylvania
      This new study of the dilemmas of collection management and the nagging question of deaccessioning illuminates the difficult practical challenges that the custodians of culture must wrestle with regularly. In so doing, it lays bare how cultural patronage is imprinted not just with the donor’s good intentions, but also with ego, hubris, power, and dreams of perpetuity. Essential reading for anyone who collects, who manages collections, or who just plain cares about the future of our collective culture[On Towards a New Reality]

      Elaine Heumann Gurian Senior Museum Consultant
      Rarely does one book look so fully and dispassionately at so many examples of a single issue - the collective responsibilities associated with dispersing museum collections, with all the associated gut-wrenching decision-making processes. As a proponent of complexity theory, I find the book invaluable for another reason. Every decision examined is a close call, filled with regret, urgency, justification, debate over alternatives, and at best provisional and temporary certitude. When any museum’s board members read these studies in their entirety, they will have everything needed to understand the many issues involved, but taking a position will continue to be based on one’s own sense of personal responsibilities and judgment. [On Case Studies] 

      Greg Stevens | Director, Master of Arts in Museum Professions. Director, Institute of Museum Ethics, Seton Hall University
      This volume presents a useful and timely collection of cases about the complexities of deaccessioning in museums, but it does so much more. The editors have wisely and deftly contextualized these historical deaccessioning cases against the backdrop of a sector forever undergoing a major paradigm shift. The authors each present a compelling case of institutional sustainability, legal and ethical challenges, risk-taking, relevance, and reputational management, rich with detail and reference far beyond the headlines. My gears are turning about how to integrate this essential material into my courses at Seton Hall, including history and theory of museums, legal and ethical issues, registration methods, and activism and social issues. My graduate students are sure to engage fully and vocally about these cases and the lessons they present for the future of museums. [On Case Studies] 

      Deaccessioning and Museums: eBook Edition
      Editors Stefanie S Jandl and Mark S Gold
      Pages 926
      Illustrations 48
      Publication March 2021
      Edition £75

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