Deaccessioned Artworks

The Indianapolis Museum of Art has embarked on a systematic evaluation of its collection since 2007 to identify candidates for deaccessioning (e.g. sale, transfer, or exchange). All objects proposed for deaccessioning are subject to the criteria and procedures outlined in the IMA's Deaccession Policy. Since 2007, the furniture, antiquities, textiles, American painting, European painting and contemporary collections have been reviewed and assessed. The decorative arts, Asian art and African collections are currently under review with additional works proposed for deaccessioning to be presented for approval at the Collections Committee and Board of Governors meetings in the future.

Deaccession Policy

During this survey of the collection, unaccessioned objects that are found will also be reviewed for possible disposal and/or acquisition. These objects will be advertised in The Indianapolis Star in accordance with the State of Indiana’s legislation governing abandoned cultural property in an effort to find the original owners and/or to gain clear title. After the required waiting period, all abandoned cultural property will either be accessioned or disposed of.

Each work of art identified as a deaccession candidate will be deaccessioned according to the Deaccession Policy in a timely manner. The income generated through the auction of deaccessioned works of art will be reapplied towards the purchase of new works of art in each respective curatorial area.

These efforts will allow the Museum to exchange select objects for others believed by today's curatorial leadership to be better aligned with its mission. Please see below for a searchable list of deaccessioned artwork recently sold, transferred or exchanged, and corresponding sale results when applicable, as well as deaccessioned works awaiting sale, transfer, or exchange and their assigned valuations. We have also begun to link deaccessioned artworks to artworks newly acquired by means of the relevant funds.

Deaccessioned artwork search

Title/ArtistAccession NumberDeaccession DateRecipientsort iconTransfer Notes
The Nativity (obverse) Shepherds of Bethlehem (reverse)60.272A-B12/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lots 1518 and 1519)
The Dance of Life Begins Early and Goes on (verso), With Pleasure, Pain and the Protagonist (recto)38.4112/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1435)
Prison Walls Cannot Control The Flight Of The Soul/Courage - Hope75.13212/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1570)
Beyond The Sky and Beneath the Sea are Known But to God and Fantasy67.19A12/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1542)
The Philosopher55.212/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1496)
Exposition Universalle International49.7112/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 86)
Sea (recto), Nude Male (verso) (2 medals)64.73712/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lots 1532 and 1533)
Sower of the Forest66.7A12/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1536)
In Wilderness is the Preservation of Sanity68.2.112/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1544)
The Heavens Declare the Glory of God (Obverse) and the Firmament Sheweth His Handiwork (Reverse)63.321A12/18/2008Presidential Coin & AntiqueSold on 6/13/2009 (Lot 1530)
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