The Victoria and Albert (V&A) Museum in London removed the Sackler name from its galleries and courtyard. The V&A joins a long list of museums to get rid of the Sackler name, from the Guggenheim to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to the British Museum. The V&A was one of the last holdouts.
"The V&A and the family of the late Dr. Mortimer D. Sackler have mutually agreed that the V&A’s Centre for Arts Education and Exhibition Road courtyard will no longer carry the Sackler name. Dame Theresa Sackler was a trustee of the V&A between 2011 and 2019, and we are immensely grateful for her service to the V&A over the years. We have no current plans to rename the spaces," a spokesman for the V&A told The Art Newspaper.
Now, signs for the "Sackler Centre for Arts Education" and the "Sackler Courtyard" have been taken down. The decision was made in May 2022, according to the Art Newspaper.
The Sackler family made a fortune as owners of Purdue Pharma, the pharmaceutical company that manufactured OxyContin and many allege fueled the U.S. opioid epidemic. Purdue Pharma filed for bankruptcy in 2019.
The V&A's announcement comes before a documentary about artist Nan Goldin's campaign against the Sacklers, All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, opens at the London Film Festival.
"It’s amazing. I was shocked when I heard it. The V&A has been the last bastion of holdouts in terms of those supporting the Sacklers," Goldin said. "It’s a big victory for people who go to museums and do not want to see the name of the family who helped ignite the overdose crisis."
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