The Art Law Podcast
Steven Schindler & Katie Wilson-Milne
The Art Law Podcast hosts discussions about topics at the intersection of art and law with art lawyers Steve Schindler and Katie Wilson-Milne and their distinguished guests.
The Art Law Podcast: conversations at the intersection of art and law
Jan 19 2018
Surprise! NYC Repeals Auction Regulations
Steve and Katie give a brief update on New York City’s recent repeal of its regulations governing auctioneers and auction practices. These regulations provided consumer protections by enforcing a measure of transparency into the auction process, such as requiring auctioneers to publicly disclose when they had a financial stake in an object being sold. Interestingly, major stakeholders appeared surprised by the repeal, which they had not requested and seemed indifferent about.
May 10 2022
Anti-Money Laundering Update: FinCEN's Surprising Conclusion and the Impact of Russian Sanctions on the US Art Market
Susan Mumford and Chris King, co-founders of ArtAML, return to the Podcast and talk with Steve about the recent release by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network ("FinCEN") of its “Study of the Facilitation of Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism through the Trade in Works of Art." To the surprise of Steve and his guests, FinCEN concluded that there is limited evidence of money laundering and little risk of terror financing through the sale of high value art. The discussion focuses on the findings of the study, and its implications, particularly when compared with the existing AML regulations covering the art market in the UK and the EU. (Susan and Chris discussed these requirements with Katie and Steve on the November 1, 2021 episode entitled: “How Anti-Money Laundering Regulations are Hitting the Art Market in the United Kingdom and What Participants Can Do to Comply.”) Recorded just days after Russian troops invaded Ukraine, the conversation turned to the impact that sanctions against Russia and its oligarchs are likely to have on the high-value art market, and what art market participants must do to not run afoul of these sanctions.
Mar 28 2022
Turkey’s Quest for the Stargazer: Part 2
With Katie on a parental leave, Steve speaks with Herrick Feinstein’s Victor Rocco about his firm’s representation of the Republic of Turkey in litigation brought by Turkey to possess a millennia-old Anatolian marble statue (the Stargazer) owned by Michael Steinhardt and sold by him through Christie’s. (We previously had counsel for Christie’s and Steinhardt on the podcast.) After a trial in the Southern District of New York, Turkey lost for the primary reason that they could not provide facts supporting their claim to ownership of the Stargazer, specifically that it was stolen from modern day Turkey after 1906. Turkey has appealed that decision, and Victor and Steve discuss the trial and Turkey’s arguments on appeal.
Mar 3 2022
Skepticism and Optimism Around Art NFTs - Revisited
In a re-release of last June's episode, Katie and Steve speak (again) with digital art and NFT enthusiast Jason Bailey about the sudden rise of NFTs in the art world, what they really are, why they have value, and who is interested in them and why.
Jan 10 2022
1 hr 3 mins
Turkey’s Quest for the Stargazer
Katie and Steve speak with veteran cultural property and art lawyer, Tom Kline, about his representation of Christie’s and Michael Steinhardt in litigation brought by Turkey to possess a millennia-old Anatolian marble statue (the Stargazer) owned by Steinhardt and sold by him through Christie’s. After a trial in the Southern District of New York, Turkey lost for the primary reason that they could not provide facts supporting their claim to ownership of the Stargazer, specifically that it was stolen from modern day Turkey after 1906.
Dec 2 2021
How Anti-Money Laundering Regulations are Hitting the Art Market in the United Kingdom and What Participants Can Do to Comply
Steve and Katie talk to Susan Mumford and Chris King, co-founders of ArtAML, about the recent roll out of AML regulations covering art market participants in the United Kingdom, who is implicated, how they can comply, and what this means for art businesses and the culture of secrecy in the art market generally. The requirement to determine and seek documentation of the ultimate beneficial owner on each end of the transaction is something financial institutions have long done, but not art dealers. ArtAML is an online platform designed to help art market participants comply with their legal obligations of due diligence and documentation. This conversation is of particular interest to those in the United States as the United Kingdom is the second largest art market outside the United States, and we expect AML regulations to roll out to the art market in the United States soon.
Nov 1 2021
1 hr 6 mins
Skepticism and Optimism Around Art NFTs
Katie and Steve speak (again) with digital art and NFT enthusiast Jason Bailey about the sudden rise of NFTs in the art world, what they really are, why they have value, and who is interested in them and why.
Jun 2 2021
1 hr 3 mins
Fair Use and Andy Warhol: The Line Between Appropriation, Copying, and Inspiration Is Not Clear
Katie and Steve finally tackle the evolving area of fair use as a defense to copyright infringement with Luke Nikas, attorney for the Andy Warhol Foundation and Partner at Quinn Emanuel. Luke represents the Foundation in its ongoing litigation with photographer Lynn Goldsmith about Warhol’s use of Goldsmith’s photograph of the artist Prince as an artist study for a series of screen prints. Goldsmith claims Warhol infringed her copyright in the original photograph. The Warhol Foundation says Warhol’s use of the photograph is fair use under the Copyright Act. The trial court agreed with the Warhol Foundation and the Second Circuit recently agreed with Goldsmith. Katie, Steve, and Luke discuss this complicated area of law and how artists navigate (or don’t) around it.
May 3 2021
1 hr 18 mins
Moral Rights Around the World: Two Case Studies
Steve and Katie speak with legal scholar Mira Sundara Rajan regarding the international landscape for artist moral rights protections, including the adoption of moral rights laws in the developing world, common law versus civil law jurisdictions, and the connection between moral rights and cultural heritage concerns. Steve, Katie, and Mira dive into two case studies: the Indian case Amar Nath Sehgal v. Union of India (2005) involving government removal of and damage to famous murals from a government building and the more recent controversy surrounding the removal of the Picasso stone murals on the Y-Block government buildings in Oslo, Norway.
Mar 29 2021
1 hr 19 mins
New and Impending Art World Money Laundering Regulations
Steve and Katie speak with British art lawyer and General Counsel of Phillips auction house Martin Wilson about European anti-money laundering regulations applicable to art market participants and their recent implementation in the UK. Generally, these regulations require art dealers, galleries, and auction houses to register with the government and undertake due diligence on every art transaction over a certain threshold amount, including with respect to the identity of all ultimate beneficial owners of the transacting parties. Steve, Katie, and Martin discuss the practicalities of compliance, the general secrecy of the art market and the reasoning behind such regulations, and Martin’s recently published book, Art Law and the Business of Art. Steve and Katie also discuss the anti-money laundering regulatory environment in the United States as it applies to the art market and what may be just around the corner.
Mar 5 2021
1 hr 6 mins
Goodbye 2020 and some art law updates
Steve and Katie end 2020 with a few updates on past podcast episode topics, including 5Pointz and moral rights litigation, the Painted Bride mosaic mural battle, deaccessioning in Baltimore, and pandemic related litigation. We look forward to many more interesting topics in 2021! Resources: https://news.artnet.com/art-world/5pointz-additional-2m-attorney-fees-1927310 https://www.inquirer.com/arts/isaiah-zagar-murals-philadelphia-painted-bride-court-case-20201022.html https://whyy.org/articles/isaiah-zagars-painted-bride-mosaic-could-survive-in-new-plan-for-old-city-site/ https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/aamd-sends-a-warning-note-to-museum-directors-on-deaccessioning https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/baltimore-museum-of-art-deaccession-called-off-sothebys-1234575295/ https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/story/2020-10-29/baltimore-museum-art-deaccession-sale-warhol-marden https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/30/arts/design/baltimore-museum-brooklyn-art-auction-sothebys.html https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/museums/baltimore-museum-warhol-sale/2020/12/04/1643859e-3317-11eb-8d38-6aea1adb3839_story.html https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/story/2020-12-29/deaccession-museum-art-auctions-2020
Jan 8 2021
Current Events of Deaccessioning and Cries of Censorship
Steve and Katie discuss the recent deaccessioning controversies at the Brooklyn Museum, Baltimore Museum of Art, and Everson Museum of Art in light of the ethical guidelines, new AAMD guidance, and the economic and social climate. They also discuss the recent postponement of the Philip Guston retrospective at the National Gallery, Tate Modern, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, and Museum of Fine Arts Boston due to its depiction of white nationalism and the criticisms of that decision. Please note there have been developments on all these topics since our recording, so please see the resources links for up to date information. Resources: AAMD: https://aamd.org/for-the-media/press-release/aamd-board-of-trustees-approves-resolution-to-provide-additional https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/aamd-sends-a-warning-note-to-museum-directors-on-deaccessioning Brooklyn Museum: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/16/arts/design/brooklyn-museum-sale-christies-coronavirus.html https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/brooklyn-museum-steams-ahead-on-deaccessioning https://www.artforum.com/news/brooklyn-museum-continues-deaccessioning-spree-84242 https://www.artmarketmonitor.com/2020/10/16/brooklyn-museum-to-sell-monet-miro-degas-and-more-at-sothebys-in-second-deaccesioning-round/ Everson Museum of Art: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/story/2020-09-14/syracuse-museum-jackson-pollock-auction https://www.wsj.com/articles/an-art-museum-sells-its-soul-11600808127 https://www.christies.com/features/Expert-view-Jackson-Pollock-Red-Composition-10893-7.aspx https://www.syracuse.com/entertainment/2020/10/everson-museums-jackson-pollock-painting-sells-for-12-million-at-auction.html https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/to-mirror-and-support-community-everson-museum-board-chair-defends-deaccessioning-of-a-pollock Baltimore Museum of Art: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/02/arts/design/baltimore-museum-deaccessioning.html?smid=tw-nytimesarts&smtyp=cur https://www.artnews.com/art-news/market/baltimore-museum-of-art-deaccessioning-works-sothebys-1234572422/ https://www.theartnewspaper.com/comment/bma-curators-letter-response-to-deaccessioning https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/baltimore-museum-of-art-deaccession-open-letter-1234574032/ https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/former-trustees-and-donors-ask-state-to-block-sale-of-three-important-works-by-the-baltimore-museum-of-art https://hyperallergic.com/595171/baltimore-museum-of-art-deaccessions-condemn/?utm_campaign=Daily&utm_content=20201019&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Hyperallergic%20Newsletter https://www.latimes.com/_preview?_cms.db.previewId=00000175-37f8-da10-a57d-b7f976590000&_date= Philip Guston: https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/philip-guston-postponement-tate-national-gallery-directors-1234572527/ https://docs.google.com/document/d/1LVXTB30hp2oNz1Vm4P8jpXgg4sIieWNbdaqWqffHcN4/edit https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/museums/national-gallery-postponement-guston-show-klan-images/2020/10/07/a35adb32-0831-11eb-a166-dc429b380d10_story.html https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/10/19/philip-guston-and-the-boundaries-of-art-culture https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/28/arts/design/philip-guston-retrospective-date.html https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/tate-suspends-senior-curator-over-guston-controversy Additional: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/story/2020-10-07/palm-springs-art-museum-deaccession-frankenthaler https://www.artnews.com/feature/most-controversial-museum-deaccessioning-plans-1234575019/
Oct 29 2020
Revisiting the Salvator Mundi by (probably/possibly?) Leonardo da Vinci with Robert Simon
Steve and Katie speak with old master art dealer and scholar Robert Simon about his discovery of the painting Salvator Mundi attributed to Leonardo da Vinci and sold by Christie’s in 2017 for almost half a billion dollars. They discuss Simon’s purchase of the painting from an obscure New Orleans auction house, the painting’s painstaking restoration and scholarly review, and what we know and don’t know about its history over the last 500 years. Resources: https://www.robertsimon.com/leonardos-salvator-mundi https://salvatormundirevisited.com/ https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/past/leonardo-da-vinci-painter-at-the-court-of-milan https://www.christies.com/lotfinder/Lot/leonardo-da-vinci-1452-1519-salvator-mundi-6110563-details.aspx
Sep 14 2020
"The Last Leonardo" with Ben Lewis - Revisited
We are re-releasing our podcast with journalist and author Ben Lewis in anticipation of our forthcoming discussion with Robert Simon. We talked with Ben in depth about his book, The Last Leonardo: The Secret Lives of the World’s Most Expensive Painting, about the history and ultimate sale by Christie’s auction house in November 2017 for just over $450.3 million of the painting Salvator Mundi attributed to Leonardo Da Vinci. Our next episode with Robert Simon will revisit this story from a different perspective. Resources: https://www.amazon.com/Last-Leonardo-Secret-Expensive-Painting/dp/1984819259 https://www.christies.com/features/Leonardo-and-Post-War-results-New-York-8729-3.aspx https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/apr/17/last-leonardo-secret-lives-worlds-most-expensive-painting-ben-lewis-review https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/the-last-leonardo-by-ben-lewis-review-is-salvator-mundi-really-worth-450-million-vqvk2gjx5 https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/30/arts/design/salvator-mundi-louvre-abu-dhabi.html
Sep 8 2020
1 hr 2 mins
Copying in 3D: digitizing GLAM collections
Katie and Steve speak with Michael Weinberg, the Executive Director of the Engelberg Center of Innovation Law and Policy at NYU Law School, about 3D digitization of gallery, library, archive and museum (“GLAM”) institution collections, the goals and motivations for such projects, and how digitization implicates (or doesn’t) rightsholders. They also discuss the open access framework in which these digitization projects occur, the difference between 2D and 3D copying, and the legal and ethical frameworks at play. Resources: https://glam3d.org/ https://www.law.nyu.edu/centers/engelberg https://www.law.nyu.edu/centers/engelberg/team/weinberg https://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp2/25/421/2325910/
Aug 3 2020
Arts Nonprofits in the Pandemic
Katie and Steve speak with Jay Sanders, Executive Director and Chief Curator of Artists Space, a vanguard artist-centered arts nonprofit, founded in 1972 and located in New York City, about the devastating impact of the pandemic shutdown on small arts nonprofits, as well as the inspiration and community being cultivated in this moment of hardship. Resources: https://artistsspace.org/about https://www.americansforthearts.org/by-topic/disaster-preparedness/the-economic-impact-of-coronavirus-on-the-arts-and-culture-sector https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/arts-organizations-coronavirus-losses-report-1202687488/ https://hyperallergic.com/565254/covid-19-unesco-icom-study/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=D052120&utm_content=D052120+CID_5b52f14555a5e4874a6468534c7b8eb5&utm_source=HyperallergicNewsletter&utm_term=13%2520of%2520Museums%2520Worldwide%2520May%2520Close%2520Permanently%2520Due%2520to%2520COVID-19%2520Studies%2520Say
Jun 1 2020
Art Museums in the Pandemic
Katie and Steve welcome back to the podcast museum director, art commentator, and art historian Max Anderson to discuss what art museums (now closed) are dealing with during the Covid-19 crisis in terms of mission, funding, audience engagement and an uncertain future. They discuss structural issues and practices pre-existing the pandemic that put pressure on museums’ stated missions and appeal, as well as potential shifts in focus and priority that may come out of this current moment of reorganization and prioritization. This is the first of several episodes of the Art Law Podcast discussing the impact of the pandemic and its accompanying shut downs on the art world. Resources: http://www.maxwellanderson.com/about http://docplayer.net/15254796-Metrics-of-success-in-art-museums.html https://aamd.org/our-members/from-the-field/museums-and-covid-19 https://aamd.org/for-the-media/press-release/aamd-board-of-trustees-approves-resolution-to-provide-additional https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/museums/this-is-how-bad-things-are-for-museums-they-now-have-a-green-light-to-sell-off-their-art/2020/04/29/b5492a5e-899e-11ea-8ac1-bfb250876b7a_story.html https://abcnews.go.com/Business/coronavirus-exposes-vulnerability-nyc-museums-museum-workers/story?id=69957903 https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-05-06/the-moma-has-taken-a-chainsaw-to-its-staff-budget-and-exhibitions https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/whitney-and-new-museum-lay-off-staff-members-as-economic-fallout-continues https://hyperallergic.com/558008/metropolitan-museum-lays-off-81-employees-now-estimates-150m-in-losses/
May 11 2020
Moral Rights in Street Art: The 5Pointz Story - Revisited
In this bonus episode, Steve analyzes the recent Second Circuit decision affirming the 2018 decision awarding $6.75 million to the artists of 5Pointz, whose works were whitewashed and torn down by the building’s owner in 2013. To put this important decision into a broader context, we have re-released our April 2018 episode on 5Pointz, where we discuss the district court case in which the aerosol artists asserted violations of their moral rights under the Visual Artist Rights Act, the U.S. moral rights statute. In that episode, Steve and Katie discuss the origin and contours of moral rights, how they fit into U.S. copyright law, the story of 5Pointz and the laws around street art and graffiti. They are joined by famous aerosol artist Jonathan Cohen (Meres One), 5Pointz event planner and artist representative Marie Cecile Flageul, and Renee Vara, the artists’ expert in the 5Pointz trial.
Mar 2 2020
1 hr 5 mins
Art of the Chase: Inside Art Auctions - Revisited
This month, we are updating and rereleasing one of our most popular episodes, Art of the Chase: Inside Art Auctions. In this episode, we take a close look at art auctions – how they work, their place in the art market and the rules and regulations that confine/define them. Auctions at Sotheby’s and Christie’s now regularly net tens and sometimes hundreds of millions of dollars for a single work. Christie’s sold Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi painting for $450 million in 2017, still, by far, the highest price ever garnered by a piece of art at auction. At the same time, much about the auction process remains secret. The identity of the buyer and seller is often known only to the auction house, and the reserve price (below which an artwork will not be sold) is known by the auctioneer but not the bidders. While the auctioneer may not sell a work of art below its reserve price, it can bid on the work below the reserve to get the auction going. Steve and Katie discuss these issues and others having to do with regulation, transparency and potential conflicts, and welcome famous Sotheby’s auctioneer Oliver Barker to take us behind the scenes of a big auction. Resources: http://www.sothebys.com/en/specialists/oliver-barker/bio.html https://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/28/arts/design/as-art-market-rise-so-do-questions-of-oversight.html https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/about/auctioneer_law_rules.pdf https://www.princeton.edu/ceps/workingpapers/203ashenfelter.pdf https://insight.kellogg.northwestern.edu/article/place_your_bids http://blogs.cornell.edu/info2040/2015/10/15/auction-psychology-emotions-behind-bidding/ https://mindhacks.com/2012/09/19/bbc-column-auction-psychology/ https://www.thecut.com/2016/12/inside-the-mind-of-a-million-dollar-art-bidder.html
Dec 2 2019
1 hr 1 min
Arts Organizations Seek Change Via Deaccessioning: The di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art and Painted Bride Art Center
Steve and Katie discuss two recent art world controversies involving small, local nonprofits seeking to raise money through asset divestment. The di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art in Napa Valley is attempting to deaccession most of its permanent collection of Bay Area art works in the face of vocal art world opposition. In Philadelphia, the proposed sale of the Painted Bride Art Center building by the organization’s board, including its one of a kind mosaic mural façade, has raised public protest and legal challenge. Both entities claim they need funds to continue their mission, while critics say the act of selling off the assets at issue in each case directly undercuts such mission. Resources: di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art: http://www.dirosaart.org/history/ https://datebook.sfchronicle.com/art-exhibits/napas-di-rosa-center-to-sell-most-of-its-fabled-art-collection https://nonprofitquarterly.org/napa-museum-plan-to-deaccession-art-works-raises-art-communitys-ire/ http://www.artnews.com/2019/08/20/dirosa-foundation-open-letter/ http://www.artnews.com/2019/08/28/di-rosa-foundation-deaccessioning-support/ https://www.artforum.com/news/di-rosa-contemporary-art-center-director-responds-to-concerns-over-plan-to-sell-holdings-80550 Painted Bride Litigation: https://paintedbride.org/about-us/ https://philly.curbed.com/2017/11/28/16709332/painted-bride-building-theater-for-sale https://observer.com/2019/09/philadelphia-painted-bride-art-center-condos/ https://philly.curbed.com/2018/9/14/17861972/painted-bride-building-art-center-old-city-philadelphia https://whyy.org/articles/judge-old-citys-painted-bride-cant-be-sold-for-condos/
Nov 5 2019