3 September 2021

Art@Law | Constantine Cannon

Europe

Fake Banksy NFT sold through artist’s website for £244k: A hacker has returned $336,000 to a British collector after he tricked him into buying a fake NFT advertised through the artist’s official website.

31.08.2021, BBC News: Fake Banksy NFT sold through artist’s website for £244k

31.08.2021, The Art Newspaper: Were Banksy and Pranksy both pranked in $330,000 NFT sale?

Amsterdam to return Kandinsky work to pre-war owners’ heirs: Amsterdam says it will return a valuable painting by Wassily Kandinsky to the heirs of a Jewish family that originally owned it, ending years of legal wrangling over the work that was sold at auction in 1940.

27.08.2021, Bloomberg: Amsterdam to return Kandinsky work to pre-war owners’ heirs

26.08.2021, The New York Times: Amsterdam’s mayor announces talks with Jewish heirs on Kandinsky claim

27.08.2021, The Associated Press: Amsterdam to return Kandinsky work to pre-war owners’ heirs

30.08.2021, The Art Newspaper: Amsterdam to return Kandinsky sold under Nazi occupation to heirs

A German court sentenced an art dealer to two years in prison for allegedly selling fake works by famed artist Günther Uecker: A Düsseldorf court has sentenced the art dealer Ernst Jockels to two years and four months in prison for attempting to sell forged artworks purportedly by German artists Günther Uecker and A.R. Penck. The dealer maintains the works are authentic and told Artnet News that he plans to appeal the decision. 

25.08.2021, ArtnetA German court sentenced an art dealer to two years in prison for allegedly selling fake works by famed artist Günther Uecker

UK ivory ban: additional enforcement requirements to the Ivory Act 2018: On 23 August 2021, the Government published a consultation seeking views on additional enforcement requirements under the Ivory Act as well as draft statutory guidance on the use of civil sanctions. The Government is seeking views on a proposed civil sanctions regime including the application of enforcement undertakings, stop notices and monetary penalties and additional requirements for civil sanctions and appeals related to civil sanctions. The consultation closes on 19 September 2021. 

23.08.2021, Gov.uk: UK ivory ban: additional enforcement requirements to the Ivory Act 2018

United States

US Copyright Office suggests Congress pass new laws to protect artists from state infringement: According to a new report issued by the US Copyright Office, Congress needs to craft new legislation to protect copyright holders when their creative work is infringed by state agencies or institutions. Shira Perlmutter, the director of the Copyright Office, noted in her introduction to the report that “the evidence indicates that state infringement represents a legitimate concern for copyright owners,” adding that there is “little justification” for states to get away with actions “for which a private party could be held liable”.

31.08.2021, The Art Newspaper: US Copyright Office suggests Congress pass new laws to protect artists from state infringement

New York art fairs are returning, eyes open and fingers crossed: Major exhibitions like the Armory Show are coming back from a pandemic hiatus, but travel restrictions and the rise of the Delta variant are challenging their plans.

27.08.2021, The New York Times: New York art fairs are returning, eyes open and fingers crossed

He sold antiquities for decades, many of them fake, investigators say: The owner of a Manhattan gallery was charged with grand larceny and other crimes by prosecutors who say he mass-produced objects that he passed off as ancient artifacts.

25.08.2021, The New YorkTimes: He sold antiquities for decades, many of them fake, investigators say

World

Scammers and hackers see new frontier in NFT art: Serbian artist Milos Rajkovic was floored last month when his social-media fans started touting an online sale of his animated, digital portraits as NFTs, or nonfungible tokens. Mr. Rajkovic, who goes by Sholim, had watched NFTs take over the art world, but he had never toyed with them. Horrified, he pulled up the platform OpenSea and found an impostor trying to sell off 122 of his works as NFTs for as much as $50,000 combined.

27.08.2021, The Wall Street Journal: Scammers and hackers see new frontier in NFT art

Looted 2,700-year-old bricks—discovered in Swiss warehouse—are returned to Iran: A spectacular group of decorated bricks, dating from around 700BC and looted from an Iranian archaeological site has now been recovered from a bonded warehouse in Switzerland. The large painted bricks have recently been returned to Tehran and will go on display as soon as the Covid-19 situation allows.

26.08.2021, The Art Newspaper: Looted 2,700-year-old bricks—discovered in Swiss warehouse—are returned to Iran

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