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Tate and Anthony d’Offay agree to cut ties permanently

Museum will return loaned works and remove the retired dealer’s name from the building nearly three years after allegations of sexual harassment emerged

Anthony d’Offay © Niklas Hallen/AFP via Getty Images

The Tate and Anthony d’Offay have agreed to end their relationship nearly three years after the retired dealer was accused of sexual harassment, according to a statement released by the museum today.

The agreement, which is understood to be legal, involves the return of works on loan to Tate from d’Offay and the removal of his name from signage in the building.

Tate initially cut ties with d’Offay in January 2018 after three women who used to work with the former dealer accused him of sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour dating back to between 1997 and 2004. One employee worked at d’Offay’s Dering Street gallery for two years from late 1997, and subsequently filed complaints about his alleged inappropriate behaviour. Another woman said that in 2000, the dealer "pulled me really tight and started kissing my neck" while she was on the phone. D’Offay has strongly denied the allegations.

The Observer newspaper also revealed in 2018 that police were investigating d’Offay after receiving a complaint from a fourth woman that he sent her malicious messages. D’Offay denied knowledge of the investigation and was never contacted by the police, his spokesperson said at the time.

Trustees at the Tate renewed links with d’Offay in April 2019, prompting more than 35 artists and curators to sign an open letter, questioning their decision to re-establish ties and asking if the gallery had carried out an internal investigation into d’Offay’s behaviour.

Tate declined to say whether d’Offay’s behaviour has been investigated by its ethics committee.

The Artist Rooms Collection, which was established in 2008 through a donation of 725 works from d’Offay and is jointly owned by Tate and the National Galleries of Scotland, will not be affected by the changes, according to the statement. D’Offay stepped down as ex-officio curator of the Artist Rooms project in December 2017.