Monday, September 10, 2007

Barnes Art Museum Moves Despite Charter Prohibition

The Barnes Foundation art museum - with a priceless collection including Renoirs, Cézannes, and Matisses - took another step towards moving its home from the Philadelphia suburbs into that city's downtown, the NY Times reports.

This is interesting from a legal perspective because the Foundation's charter and bylaws prohibit moving a single piece of artwork from the exact location on the walls where the Foundation's eccentric founder, Albert Barnes, placed them over fifty years ago.

With the Foundation facing bankruptcy - and several other foundations offering a bailout conditioned on moving the collection to a more publicly-accessible location - a judge three years ago released the Foundation from the strictures of its own charter and authorized the move.

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