NORTH AMERICA

Disgraced Art Dealer Inigo Philbrick Indicted on Federal Fraud Charges
A New York grand jury has indicted art dealer Inigo Philbrick on federal charges of wire fraud and aggravated identity theft; Philbrick has entered a plea of not guilty. The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District claims that Philbrick defrauded multiple people and businesses in New York between 2016 and 2019 to finance his art business, access valuable art, and obtain sales proceeds, funding and loans. Philbrick also misrepresented the ownership of certain artworks by selling more than 100 percent ownership to multiple individuals and entities without their knowledge.
Continue Reading Disgraced Art Dealer Inigo Philbrick Indicted on Federal Fraud Charges & Other Stories

Paris Dealer Charged with Fraud and Money Laundering in Sale of Golden Sarcophagus to the Met
French art dealer and Mediterranean archeology expert Christophe Kunicki was charged with fraud and money laundering in Paris following an investigation that began after the sale of a golden sarcophagus to New York’s Metropolitan Museum for €3.5 million in 2017.
Continue Reading Paris Dealer Who Sold Golden Sarcophagus to the Met Charged with Money Laundering & Other Stories

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

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

AMERICAS

Anti−Money Laundering Compliance Bill for the Antiquities Market
The proposed legislation, officially called the Corporate Transparency Act of 2019, passed the House of Representatives on October 22 and is now being reviewed by the Senate’s Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. The bill is part of a broader effort to combat money laundering and terrorist financing in the United States and Europe.


Continue Reading U.S. Considers Anti−Money Laundering Bill for Antiquities Market, Following EU’s Lead and Other Headlines

UNITED STATES

Mercedes-Benz Suit Against Street Artists Allowed to Proceed
Mercedes-Benz brought a declaratory judgment action against four street artists who saw their work prominently displayed on social media as background for the automaker’s G-Class track ads. Mercedes is seeking a declaration that its use of the artworks was not a copyright infringement as it was either fair use or because the claim is precluded by the Architectural Works Copyright Protection Act (1990). 
Continue Reading A Week of Surreal Headlines: A Charging Bull Smashed by Man Wielding Banjo, A Stolen 18-Karat Gold Toilet, and a $20 Million Consignment Decided by a Game of Rock, Paper, Scissors

UNITED STATES

Local Patrons Donate Impressionist Collection to the High Museum of Art in Atlanta
Doris and Shouky Shaheen donated their collection of Impressionist paintings to the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, constituting one of the largest donations in the museum’s history.  The gifted collection includes 24 Impressionist, post-Impressionist, and Modernist paintings, including works by Claude Monet, Henri Matisse, Amedeo Modigliani, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Édouard Vuillard. The High Museum will open a gallery later this year named after the Shaheens to display the works.


Continue Reading Atlanta’s High Museum of Art Receives Landmark Donation of Impressionist, Post-Impressionist and Modernist Paintings & Other Art World Headlines