There's a campaign out there to persuade the National Galleries to stump up £100,000,000 for the right to continue displaying a couple of out-of-copyright soft porn illustrations:
Diana and Callisto
Diana and Actaeon
The paintings are already in situ, but are technically owned by the Duke of Sutherland, who wants to raise a bit of capital to ride out the credit crunch. No-one seems to have suggested that he get a fucking job instead.
They are indeed smashing pictures, and I've got nothing against Titian, but he's not going to see a penny from this sale; and the "loss to the nation" argument - that the public will never again see these images if the originals end up in a mansion in Dubai - is rendered fatuous by modern printing technology, never mind the internet.
So here's a better idea - in fact, here's two.
1) If the National Galleries can somehow raise the ransom, rather than sinking it into the pockets of a hereditary peer, they should find ten thousand struggling artists and give them ten grand each to get out of their bar jobs and DWP "training" schemes and into the studio for a year. Stimulate creative industry instead of parasitism, and as a side effect free up a few thousand vacancies in the real economy which could be filled by some of those newly-impoverished bankers we hear bleating so much.
2) Failing that, I hereby volunteer to step up to the plate and, for the benefit of the Nation, produce full-scale original copies of both paintings at the special value mate's-rate price of one hundred thousand pounds. That's 0.1% of the Duke's reserve price - a bargain, surely?