mocker_bat(bum) (mocker_bat) wrote,

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Movie | The Art of the Steal (2009)

The Art of the Steal (2009)

not that I really care and sympathize,
but summary of late Roger Ebert is very correct:

Barnes hired some Philadelphia lawyers and drew up an iron-clad will, endowing the foundation with funds enabling it to be maintained indefinitely where it was and how it was. It was his specific requirement that the collection not go anywhere near the Philadelphia Museum of Art. That's exactly where it is today.

...It was carried out in broad daylight by elected officials and Barnes trustees, all of whom justified it by placing the needs of the vast public above the whims of a dead millionaire.


Well, was this such a bad thing? The Renoirs and Picassos can now be seen by anyone visiting the museum, instead of by a limited number of art students. The film could do a better job of allowing the public access issue to be defended. But what it does is tell a cautionary tale.

It is perfectly clear exactly what Barnes specified in his will. It was drawn up by the best legal minds. It is clear that what happened to his collection was against his wishes. It is clear that the city fathers acted in obviation of those wishes, and were upheld in a court of appeals. What is finally clear: It doesn't matter a damn what your will says if you have $25 billion, and politicians and the establishment want it.

Tags: movie
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