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Corcoran Gallery of Art to Merge with the National Gallery of Art and George Washington University

The Superior Court in Washington, DC, has approved a merger between the Corcoran Gallery of Art with the National Gallery of Art and George Washington University, effectively dissolving the 150-year-old museum. Judge Robert Okun noted the decision was “painful” but that it would be “even more painful to deny the relief requested and allow the Corcoran to face its likely demise.” Julia Halperin of the Art Newspaper reports that the Corcoran will turn over its Beaux Arts building and its College of Art and Design to George Washington University. The National Gallery of Art will assume a substantial portion of the Corcoran’s 17,000-work collection, which includes paintings by John Singer Sargent and Frederic Edwin Church as well as celebrated photography holdings. Over the next year, curators at both institutions will collaborate to decide which works they will keep. The remainder will be distributed to museums across the United States. An estimated one third of the Corcoran's 465-person staff stand to lose their jobs.

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