UNITED STATES

U.S. Supreme Courts Declines Certiorari in the 5Pointz Case
Two years ago, in one of the most important decisions applying the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA) since its adoption, New York’s Eastern District awarded $6.75 million in statutory damages to 21 street artists whose aerosol works were intentionally destroyed by the owner of the buildings on which they were painted. VARA gives artists the right to sue to prevent the destruction of a work of “recognized stature,” and to recover money damages if their work is distorted, mutilated or otherwise modified to the prejudice of the artist’s honor or reputation.
Continue Reading 5Pointz Artists Claim Final Victory as SCOTUS Denies Cert & Other Headlines

UNITED STATES

U.S. Senate Subcommittee’s Report Recommends Art Market Regulations
As part of its investigation into the effectiveness of sanctions against foreign persons and entities, the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations of the United States Senate issued a report focused on lack of regulation and pervasive secrecy in the art market.
Continue Reading U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Investigations Recommends Regulation of the Art Market & Other Headlines

UNITED STATES

Still No LOVE in Robert Indiana’s Estate Battle
In the ongoing suit over the rights to Robert Indiana’s artworks, defendant Michael McKenzie, the founder of American Image Art, filed new counterclaims against the Morgan Art Foundation alleging that Morgan orchestrated “one of the most massive art frauds in history.”
Continue Reading Hirst Spot Print Turned into Spots by MSCHF, Courtroom Artists Face New Challenge, Banksy Pays Homage to Hospital Workers

UNITED STATES

Police Arrest Oxford Professor for Allegedly Selling Stolen Goods to the Museum of the Bible
Dirk Obbink, Ph.D., an associate professor in papyrology and Greek literature at Oxford, England, has been accused of stealing ancient papyrus fragments from Oxford University’s Sackler Library and selling 13 of the texts to the owners of the Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC.
Continue Reading A Case for Indiana Jones: Oxford Professor Arrested for Allegedly Selling Stolen Goods & Other Art World Headlines

GLOBAL

Art Market Reacting to the Global Pandemic
“May You Live in Interesting Times” was the title of the art world’s 58th Venice Biennale of 2019, a reference to an ancient curse and a comment on the complexities of modern political and social life. Year 2020 has now taken this complexity to a whole new level, with the novel coronavirus having a devastating effect on artists, businesses and art organizations.


Continue Reading The Art World Takes on the New Normal and Other Headlines

UNITED STATES

$6.75 Million Award for 5Pointz Aerosol Artists Affirmed on Appeal
Two years ago, in one of the most important decisions applying the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA) since its adoption, New York’s Eastern District awarded $6.75 million in statutory damages to 21 graffiti artists whose aerosol works were intentionally destroyed by the owner of the buildings on which they were painted.
Continue Reading $6.75 Million Award for 5Pointz Aerosol Artists Affirmed on Appeal and Other Headlines

BREAKING

UK Adopts Anti−Money Laundering Regulations for Art Dealers and Auction Houses
This January, the UK ratified new legislation that introduced, largely without modification, the EU’s Fifth Money Laundering Directive, which imposes new compliance obligations on art market participants.


Continue Reading UK Introduces Money Laundering Regulations to the Art Market and Other Headlines

UNITED STATES

Fearless Girl Statue Caught in Further Legal Battle − This Time in Australia
The bronze “Fearless Girl” statue originally appeared in Bowling Green, a small public park in New York City, in 2017, posed in a face off against the Charging Bull statue (Wall Street Bull). The Fearless Girl became a world-famous symbol of diversity and female representation on Wall Street. Presently, the statue’s creator, Kristen Visbal, is embroiled in several legal battles with State Street Global Advisors, which purchased the first statue and say they own the sculpture’s image and name. State Street commenced suit against Visbal in February 2019, alleging trademark infringement over replicas that Visbal created in London, Oslo and Stevensville, Maryland. It is now challenging a replica that law firm Maurice Blackburn commissioned to display in Melbourne’s Federation Square. State Street argues that it originally conceived and launched the project and that Visbal “weakened the message” of the work by selling replicas.
Continue Reading Fearless Girl Statue Caught in Further Legal Battle − This Time in Australia