I posted recently on Bendor Grosvenor's article in the Art Newspaper. I heard back from Bendor- see below.
"I was amused to read your blog following my article (or rather, 'little lecture') in the Art Newspaper.
However, I would be grateful if you cold please correct it. At no point in the article did I write anything that would justify your assertion that "he means selling works of art to bolster museum operating funds rather than using deaccessioning to rebalance a collection to fit in with curatorial policy linked to issues of quality." I am surprised that you could reach that conclusion. I wrote "can we any longer avoid deaccessioning, if acquisition funds are now empty and museums have to fund acres of storage for third-rate pictures?", which clearly implies that I was talking about using any funds raised for further acquisitions. I do not and have never subscribed to the idea of selling pictures to support operating funds. And since I make no comment on the mechanism of deciding which pictures are third rate, I do not see how you can make an assumption on that either.
I regret to say that your unjustified misunderstanding of my comment then appears to colour the rest of your response. I at no point advocate attacking state institutions. In fact, you will find that much of the liberal Taskforce document you admire was written by me.
I look forward to hearing from you.
In fairness to Bendor, I'm afraid that in my eagerness to bash the Tories, I took his comment about decommissioning completely out of context and cast him in the role of an attacker of state institutions, which he obviously isn't. I wouldn't want any curators who read this blog- I know some do- to think that Bendor is an advocate of selling pictures off through the decommissioning process. This is not what he was suggesting in his article- his above comments should also make that clear. Of course Bendor has every right to take me to task for misrepresenting his point of view- but he's been quite amicable about the whole thing. Thanks Bendor.