An appraisal of the Lucas collection of art -- which th Maryland Institute College of Art, is considering whether to sell -- has been completed by art dealer and appraiser William J. Tomlinson, who said a previous estimate of its worth as $15 million to $20 million is "much too high."
The institute has been considering the sale of the 20,000-piece collection, either whole or in part, for at least two years. Virtually all of the works have been on loan to the Baltimore Museum of Art for almost 60 years, with a few pieces at the Walters Art Gallery. Completion of the appraisal brings the institute a step closer to a decision.
Institute President Fred Lazarus declined to comment yesterday the status of the appraisal.
Although Mr. Tomlinson would not reveal the collection's appraised worth, he said the $15 million to $20 million figure is "much too high" and "makes a bigger issue out of the whole matter than it should be. That's why I would tell you that." (He said he had appraised all of the works except for 50 Oriental porcelains. Of those, he said his impression is that they are "not particularly distinguished.")