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The Associated Press October 8, 2010, 2:34PM ET

Museum directors offer help with Fisk art

A national group of art museum directors has offered to help Fisk University figure out how to avoid breaking up or selling its art collection.

Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle of Nashville this summer rejected Fisk's plan to sell a 50 percent stake in the collection to a Bentonville, Ark., museum for $30 million. The 101-piece collection was donated to the school by the late artist Georgia O'Keeffe.

The historically black university has said it needs the revenue to keep operating.

The Association of Art Museum directors sent a letter to Fisk President Hazel O'Leary encouraging the school not to look at its art collection as a possible source of funds, but rather an invaluable educational resource.

Messages left Friday for Fisk officials by The Associated Press were not immediately returned.

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