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You are reading the Art Law Blast, a weekly newsletter with upcoming events, recent publications, job openings and headlines in all that is art law.
For a full listing of art law events, please visit Calendar of Events.

Apr. 3, 2014 -- U.S. Federal Power and the Repatriation of Cultural Artifacts (New York City, NY) 2 PM- 4 PM
The use of civil and criminal forfeiture actions, as well as broad informational demands by foreign governments pursuant to mutual legal assistance treaties (MLAT), have impacted the ability of collectors, museums and antiquities and paleontological dealers to acquire objects. In recent years, however, there have been conflicting opinions in the courts about how an object can be deemed stolen under the National Stolen Property Act.

Apr. 5, 2014 -- Art Law Mixer by the Book (Boston, MA) 5 PM -7 PM
Center for Art Law is taking field trips this spring. To begin, we are excited to be partnering with Ars Libri, rare and reference art book store, for our next art law mixer. All (attorneys, artists, students and affiliates) are welcome to join us for a mixer in Boston.
*Apr. 10, 2014 -- Reform of U.S. Cultural Property Policy: Accountability, Transparency, and Legal Certainty (New York City, NY) 1:30 PM- 5:30 PM
Legal scholars, museum directors, and cultural policy specialists will gather at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law to discuss "conflicts and lack of transparency in US cultural property laws and the consequences for museums, collectors, and the public."

Symposium Panelists include:
  • Ronald Spencer, Carter, Ledyard, and Milburn, LLP, NYC
  • Andrew Adler, Esq., Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP, Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Evan Barr, Esq., Steptoe and Johnson LLP, NYC
  • Mark Feldman, Esq., Garvey, Schubert, and Barer, Washington DC, Adjunct Professor, Georgetown Law
  • James Fitzpatrick, Esq., Senior Partner, Arnold & Porter, Adjunct Professor, Georgetown Law
  • Jennifer Kreder, Associate Dean and Professor, Salmon P. Chase College of Law, Northern Kentucky University
  • James McAndrew, Forensic Consultant, GDLSK, NY, former Senior Special Agent, US Customs
  • Michael McCullough, Esq., Michael McCullough LLC, NYC
  • Lucille Roussin, Adjunct Professor Cardozo Law School, Lawyers Committee for Cultural Heritage
  • Marc Wilson, former Director Nelson Atkins Museum, Kansas City
  • Jeanne Schroeder, Professor, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Arthur Houghton, formerly of Getty Museum, State Department and Gary Vikan, former director Walters Art Museum, moderators
*Apr. 10, 2014 -- Third Annual Cultural Heritage and the Arts Interest Group Dinner  (Washington, DC) 7:30 PM- 9:30 PM
Cultural Heritage and the Arts Interest Group (CHAIG) of the American Society of International Law (ASIL) invites you to its third annual dinner. While this event is hosted by CHAIG — and scheduled to correspond with the ASIL Annual Meeting/ILA Biennial Conference — all are welcome to attend. The dinner will give professionals, students, and members of the public a chance to interact and discuss the field of cultural heritage law. Apr. 11, 2014 -- Capital Art Law Mixer (Washington, DC) 5:30 PM -7:30 PM
Center for Art Law is taking two field trips this spring. While some may think that New York City is the capital of art law, this event is designed to show that the Capital has plenty of art law too. The location is new, the demographic is the same (attorneys, artists, students and affiliates). People attending include, members of the Arts Club of Washington, U.S. Copyright Office, Copyright Alliance, DC/VA/MA based artists and many more.
*May 1, 2014 -- Spring into Art Law Mixer (New York City) 6 PM - 8PM
Provenance research, resale royalty rights, temporary loans of art, authenticity, fair use or cultural heritage protection -- pick your poison! Lyons Wier Gallery is hosting our next New York City art law evening. Art is on display, Prosecco is being chilled, and the guest list is made up of ... *May 9, 2014 -- SECOND Private Tour: Neue Galerie (New York City, NY) 6 PM
Thanks to all who joined us for the first tour of the Neue Galerie "Degenerate Art" exhibition. The conses was a. the artworks on display and curatorial decisions on average are excellent; b. the tour guide can use more help. Hence, the second tour will have a new guide: Irina Tarsis, founder of Center for Art Law. To tell you a bit more about the exhibit; it is promoted as "the first major U.S. museum exhibition devoted to the infamous display of modern art by the Nazis since the 1991 presentation at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art." Following the tour, those interested may have a debriefing at the Cafe Sabarsky with provenance research and restitution experts.
NOTE: Events with a * next to the date are appearing in the Newsletter for the first time.

          For a full list of books and articles featured previously, please visit our  Publications page.
Valentina Vadi, Hildegard E.G.S. Schneider (eds.), Art, Cultural Heritage and the Market: Ethical and Legal Issues (2014), ISBN: 978-3642450938. Order Here.

Elizabeth T. Russell, Arts Law Conversations: A Surprisingly Readable Guide for Arts Entrepreneurs (2014), ISBN: 978-0-9766480-1-7. Order Here.

Tad Crawford, Business and Legal Forms for Fine Arts (3rd. Ed.) (May 2014). Order Here. "The third edition ... includes new forms for hiring and firing employees, agreements to arbitrate, promissory notes, and general releases, plus: commercial lease, sublease, and lease assignment, contract for the sale of an artwork, contract for a commission, delivery-of-art confirmation form, contract for an exhibition loan, model release, and much more."


What's New:
  • Art Law Mixers are in the Air: This Spring, our expansionist tactics are taking us to Boston and Washington DC. Please help spread the word and reserve your tickets for the May 1st NYC mixer TODAY.
  • Foreign Cultural Exchange Jurisdictional Immunity Clarification Act was reintroduced  in Congress on March  25, 2014. The proposed bill would specifically forbid Nazi-era art claims by granting explicit jurisdictional immunity for certain art exhibition activities so long as they are imported under the 22 U.S. Code § 2459 - Immunity from seizure under judicial process of cultural objects imported for temporary exhibition or display.
  • American Royalties Too Act, otherwise known as the federal Resale Royalty Rights Bill, is gearing up for a push-back from the DC lobbyists. Patricia Cohen reports for The New York Times.  The text of the Bill is now available on line
  • NY Legislation: On March 11, 2014, New York State Assembly Senator Little introduced an Act to amend the arts and cultural affairs law, in relation to opinions concerning authenticity, attribution and authorship of works of fine art. Text of the proposed amendment is available here.

Recent Court Action of Note:
  • Caterbetti v. Bloomgarden, et al. (NY Sup. Ct. Complaint Mar. 28, 2014) -- Argentine citizen is suing individual defendants associated with Belensky Gallery in New York for loosing and/or damaging artworks consigned to them. Plaintiff is seeking damages for an amount in excess of $500,000.
  • Scher v. Stendhal Gallery, 2014 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 2082 (First Dept., Mar. 27 2014) -- On appeal, J. Friedman ruled that Paula Scher, an established graphic artist owned the works she consigned to Stendhal Gallery on the basis of the agency law and not the New York Arts and Cultural Affairs law.
  • Yale University v. Konowaloff (Conn. Mar. 20, 2014) -- J. Alvin Thompson ruled against plaintiff Pierre Konowaloff, having used act of state doctrine "in which U.S. courts don't examine the validity of foreign governments' expropriation orders."  Source. Our earlier report on Konowaloff claims available here.
  • Latipac, Inc. v. Metropolitan Museum of Art (N.Y.S. Mar. 10, 2014) -- Plaintiff and Defendant own two identical items and Plaintiff seeks to sell it. Museum is understood to be denying the authenticity of the object owned by the Plaintiff (see Museum item: Head of King David, ca. 1145) and Plaintiff is seeking injunction against slander of title and defamation among other actions.
  • Cramer v. Calder Foundation, (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 28, 2014) -- case involving authenticity of a Calder sculpture owned by the Gerald Cramer Estate. Causes of action include product disparagement and antitrust violations. Attorneys for the estate are Michael Lacher and Adam Rader.
  • Basquiat v. Christie's, Inc, (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 4, 2014) -- Plaintiffs, sisters of the late Jean-Michel Basquiat, brought action against the auction house for failing to submit items consigned for sale to the Basquiat Estate for review. Christie's postponed the sale of the contested property pending the resolution of the dispute. Plaintiffs are represented by James Cinque.
  • Bilinski, et al v. Keith Haring Foundation, Inc, Complaint, 14-cv-1085 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 21, 2014) -- last week Brian Kerr filed a complaint against the Keith Haring Foundation, accusing it of defamation, interference with business relations and false advertising in violation of Trademark Law among other illegal actions. The case is assigned to Judge Cote. Summary.
  • Greene v. Paramount Pictures Corporation, Complaint, 14-cv-01044 (E.D.N.Y. Feb. 18, 2014) -- Greene, an attorney, is seeking damages for unauthorized use of his likeness for commercial purposes in making of "The Wolf of Wall Street." See film, think Dinner & a Movie.
  • ACA Galleries, Inc. v. Joseph A. Kinney, 09-CIV-6649 (2nd Cir, Jan.15, 2014) -- court held that a gallery purchasing a work of art should investigate and consult experts before purchasing a painting and cannot  maintain a claim against the seller because it failed to investigate the authenticity of the painting. 

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