Pacific Standard Time - The Artist's Legacy

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Attention shifts to Los Angeles this Fall, thanks to Pacific Standard Time, a stunning tribute to the Los Angeles post-war art scene. Pacific Standard Time (PST), spearheaded by the Getty Trust, presents simultaneous exhibitions and events at more than 60 Southland cultural institutions. PST provides an ideal opportunity for a closer look at practical business and legal considerations that preserve and shape an artist’s legacy.

Artists face unique issues that must be carefully considered and weighed to ensure the continued life of the creative output and to preserve the artistic reputation. Prudently managed business affairs will minimize problems commonly encountered when closing down a studio and during the transition of business affairs from the artist’s life to the artist’s estate.

First, there is the issue of care for the physical works of art, the critical planning for the inventory, conservation and storage of the artist’s works, including considering an archive as a permanent home for papers and other materials. Second is the issue of advantageously placing the artist’s works; which works should be preserved, which donated, and when, where, how. This naturally leads to the third issue, prudent sales; how much and what part of the inventory should be released for sale each year and through what means? Is this the moment to re-examine the extant gallery relationship? These decisions require knowledge of the art market, including a sense of timing, market conditions, and museum/collector interest.

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Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP on:

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