2005_04_gwportrait.jpgIn a stunning, yet not all that surprising, move that speaks volumes of about dwindling city funding, the NY Times reports that the New York Public Library hopes to raise millions by selling some of its artwork. Sotheby's will be handling the sale, which is expected to bring in $50-75 million, with Asher B. Durand's Hudson River School painting, Kindred Spirits, and two Gilbert Stuart portraits of George Washington in the lot. The main goal is for the NYPL to "better compete" when acquiring books and to add to its endowment. The NYPL would like the paintings to be sold to a public institution, with "preferential payment terms" given to NY institutions interested in the artwork (calling Philippe de Montebello!). Gothamist wonders if people will complain that would be unfair and sue the NYPL for fixing the auction.

The NYPL runs the public libraries in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island. Find your branch or search the online card catalog here.