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2nd Lawsuit Filed Seeking To Block Berkshire Museum Art Auction

The Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield as seen in 2013. (Berkshire Museum/Wikimedia Commons)MoreCloseclosemore
The Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield as seen in 2013. (Berkshire Museum/Wikimedia Commons)

A second lawsuit has been filed against a Pittsfield museum that hopes to auction off 40 pieces of art, including two by Norman Rockwell.

Three members of the Berkshire Museum filed the suit in Boston Thursday, seeking to block the sale.

Their lawyer, Nick O'Donnell, said members of the museum were left in the dark on the plan.

“The law treats members of a nonprofit corporation like shareholders,” O’Donnell said. “And that relationship is treated like a contract. And therefore, we feel that the museum’s decision to sell the art, as well as the damage to the institution’s overriding purpose to be an art museum, is a breach of that contract.”

The president of the Berkshire Museum's board said she believes there's firm legal ground to allow the sale to go through.

The proceeds would help finance renovations and boost the museum's endowment.

Another suit, brought by three of Norman Rockwell's sons last week, also seeks to block the sale.

This report was originally published by New England Public Radio.

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