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Museum protesters: Use attention to raise money

PITTSFIELD — The Berkshire Museum has been drawn into the national spotlight in the weeks since its leadership announced a highly controversial and heavily scrutinized plan to auction 40 works of art to fund a new direction.

Save the Art, a local group dedicated to halting the sale of the paintings, is urging museum director Van Shields and the museum’s board of trustees to reverse its decision and instead utilize the national attention as a fundraising platform.

This way, the group believes, the museum could raise enough money to get back on track financially and keep the art collection fully intact.

“I urge the museum to take advantage of this bonanza, to take a break and to stage a well-publicized exhibition of the 40 artworks in the magnificent Crane Room, a homecoming, which would draw visitors from all over and engage all interested parties in determining a new path forward that will include the best of the art in the area,” Carol Diehl – a former consultant for Time Magazine who worked with artists to commission covers for the publications – said during the group’s protest of the auction in Park Square on Sept. 9.

Pick up this week’s Record for more on this story.


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