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Berkshire Museum Nears One-Year Anniversary Of Controversial Art Sale Plan

A stone building is lit up by lights under an indigo night sky.
Berkshire Museum
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This Friday marks one year since the Berkshire Museum announced its controversial art sale plan. 

Ethan Klepetar, a member of the Berkshire Museum board of trustees, spoke to WAMC Wednesday, a day after the Pittsfield museum released financial documents that it said validated its claims that only selling art from its collection would save the museum.

“We’ve got a lot of ability now to upgrade the museum and just do an even better job of serving the community,” Klepetar told WAMC.

The museum has raised $47 million of the $55 million limit set by an agreement with the Massachusetts Attorney General. Van Shields, who initially announced the plan in 2017, retired from the position of Executive Director of the Berkshire Museum last month. His interim replacement is Dr. David Ellis.

A citizens group, Save The Art – Save The Museum, plans to mark the anniversary by protesting the next wave of sales on Saturday. For more coverage of the museum’s art sale, click here.

Josh Landes has been WAMC's Berkshire Bureau Chief since February 2018, following stints at WBGO Newark and WFMU East Orange. A passionate advocate for Western Massachusetts, Landes was raised in Pittsfield and attended Hampshire College in Amherst, receiving his bachelor's in Ethnomusicology and Radio Production. His free time is spent with his cat Harry, experimental electronic music, and exploring the woods.
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