It is not clear why the talks failed, but it is understood that the idea of part-financing the institution after it had been handed over by buying and selling items from the donated collection runs against the code of ethics set out by the Museums’ Association. […] The intention to buy and sell items for the collection would ensure that, when Saatchi retired, the gallery would have “a strong, rotating permanent collection of major installations”.
These issues may have torpedoed the talks. But doubts creep in when the story later identifies the “The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living” as still belonging to Saatchi’s collection. Its sale was, of course, captured in the title of a recent book and the piece has been installed at New York’s Metropolitan for some time with a great deal of publicity surrounding the new owner and the restoration required for the installation.
Saatchi rues lost art of conversation as gallery donation talks collapse (Independent)