Artists

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Making Sense of the Peter Doig Trial and the Authentication Fallout

As was reported in detail by the New York Times and others earlier this week, artist Peter Doig prevailed in what most agree was the strangest art related trial in many years. In a nutshell, Doig was accused by a former...more

Update: I Swear It’s Not Mine – Artist Sued for Denying He Created Art Piece

Yesterday, August 23, 2016, U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman reached a verdict in the authentication case against Peter Doig. He stated that Doig “could not have been the author of the work”, but rather in all likelihood...more

I Swear It’s Not Mine – Artist Sued for Denying He Created Art Piece

Artist Peter Doig, whose pieces regularly sell for $10 million, is currently entangled in a rare and rather odd lawsuit, which involves a work Doig denies he created. While disputes of the authenticity of pieces of artwork...more

VARA Claim over 16th Century Spanish Galleon Replica Goes Up in Smoke

The Visual Artists Rights Act (“VARA”) protects a “work of visual art” from “intentional distortion, mutilation, or other modification.” VARA defines what a work of visual art is, and also what it isn’t. A painting, drawing...more

German Federal Constitutional Court: Use of short “samples” in music titles does not qualify as infringement of exploitation...

On 31 May 2016, the German Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht – “BVerfG”) issued a judgment in favor of a Hip-Hop artist (“Artist”) who had used a 2-second-sample of Kraftwerk’s song “Metall auf Metall”...more

Is Graffiti Ineligible for Copyright Protection Just Because the Act of Tagging is Illegal?

After reports of a settlement proved premature, designer Moschino S.p.A. and its creative director Jeremy Scott have moved for summary judgment on the copyright claims filed last year by street artist Joseph Tierney, better...more

Guelph Treasure Heirs Explain Why Case Belongs in U.S. Court

We filed yesterday the opposition to the motion to dismiss my clients’ claims over the 1935 forced sale of the Guelph Treasure, or Welfenschatz. The motion was filed two months ago by defendants Germany and the Stiftung...more

Central District of California Holds That the California Resale Royalty Act Is Preempted by Federal Copyright Law

As previously discussed on this blog, the validity of the California Resale Royalty Act (the “RRA,” Civil Code Section 986), a 1976 law that requires resellers of fine art to pay a royalty of 5 percent to the artists behind...more

Innovation and Censorship of Television in China

China has embarked on a difficult transition from high growth fueled by reliance on investment and manufacturing to growth based on consumption and the service sector. For this new economic model, the key to sustaining growth...more

Germany Keeps Digging—Explanation for Excluding Jewish Member from Nazi-looted Art Advisory Commission is Worse than Before

Last week Germany’s Minister of Culture Monika Grütters made the astonishing statement that the Advisory Commission that issues recommendations for questions of allegedly Nazi-looted art in German museums would not be revised...more

Live from the Oscars! German Cultural Ministry Disparages Possible Inclusion of Jewish Member on Advisory Commission

The New York Times reports today that Germany will pay for “at least” one more year of the Gurlitt Task Force, which recently concluded its initial term of appointment amidst criticism of the German government’s handling of...more

Time to Go—Flechtheim Heirs Withdraw from Limbach Commission That Has Outlived its Usefulness

Two days after suspending their participation in the Advisory Commission on the return of cultural property seized as a result of Nazi persecution, especially Jewish property, often called the "Limbach Commission" after its...more

"Rime" Graffiti Case Against Moschino Survives Dismissal

Last year street artist Joseph Tierney, better known as “Rime,” sued designer Moschino S.p.A. and its creative director, Jeremy Scott, for a variety of copyright and trademark claims based on the alleged use of Rime’s works...more

Copyright Protection in Canada for Artists

In Canada, “copyright” refers to the bundle of rights conferred by the Copyright Act (the Act) on the copyright owner and author of a work. The owner of copyright has the sole right to produce or reproduce a work (or a...more

Is LeBron James a “Medium of Expression” under the Copyright Act?  We May Soon Find Out.

Many professional athletes these days—particularly those in the National Basketball Association—have their bodies bedecked with all sorts of tattoos. It’s a trend that has steadily caught fire over the last several years...more

Rights of Visual Artists

The Visual Artists Rights Act (VARA) is part of the U.S. Copyright Law and is found at 17 U.S.C. §106(A). This law went into effect in 1990 and grants certain rights to visual artists. It is akin to moral rights laws which...more

Art Basel: implicaciones tributarias para coleccionistas de arte estadounidenses e internacionales

Desde su lanzamiento en 2002, Art Basel Miami Beach se ha transformado en la que muchos consideran la feria de arte más prestigiosa e influyente de las Américas. La edición de 2014 recibió a más de 70 000 visitantes...more

Famed Artist Jeffrey Koons Sued For Alleged Copyright Infringement…Again

Jeffrey Koons is well-known to artists, auction houses, and copyright enthusiasts. His works of art have fetched substantial sums of money, including one that recently sold for more than $58 million—the most expensive work...more

Death v. Suicide in Event Cancellation Policies

While many Event Cancellation/Non-appearance policies offer effective coverage for financial losses and additional costs when the insured performer dies from natural causes or an accident, they reach their limits if the...more

Building Industry Challenges Public Art Requirements

The Building Industry Association of the Bay Area has filed a lawsuit in federal court in the Northern District of California challenging the City of Oakland’s recent adoption of a public art ordinance on constitutional...more

Klimt Foundation Deal with Heirs of Portrait Owner Comes to Fruition at Sotheby’s

Gustav Klimt’s Portrait of Gertrud Loew was sold at auction by Sotheby’s in London last week, for over £24 million (a figure more than £6 million in excess of the upper end of its expected sale price range). Described on the...more

Shepard Fairey Tagged: Detroit Issues Arrest Warrant

Shepard Fairey, viewed by some as a cutting edge and important “street artist” and by others as a vandal for his works of graffiti on both public and private property, has had a warrant for his arrest issued by the City of...more

Richard Prince Once Again Pushes The Limits Of Fair Use

Richard Prince is either on the very edge of fair use or is engaging in blatant copyright infringement. Unlike most however, Prince has been down this road before; accused of infringement and a defense based entirely on fair...more

Why the Battle over Artists’ Termination Rights in Sound Recording Copyright Transfers Hasn’t Happened (and Probably Won’t)

January 1, 2013 was a date long-feared by the recording industry. It marked the 35-year anniversary of the effective date of the Copyright Act of 1976, which grants authors of works an absolute right to terminate a transfer...more

Britto v. Apple: Utilizing the IP Kitchen Sink

Can an artist’s particular style of art constitute both copyrightable expression and trade dress? Brazilian artist Romero Britto has filed suit against two artists known as “Craig & Karl” for copyright infringement —...more

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