04 February 2019

Europe

‘It’s a Beatle haircut’: historian claims 15th-century portrait is from the 1960s: To the National Gallery, the man depicted in the masterpiece that hangs in its gallery of 15th-century treasures is a holy man, possibly a saint, reading a legal text. And the portrait is believed – at least by the gallery’s experts – to have been created in the workshop of the Netherlandish painter Rogier van der Weyden. 

02.02.2019, The Guardian: ‘It’s a Beatle haircut’: historian claims 15th-century portrait is from the 1960s 

Art theft as a profitable career: An update on the Pierre-Auguste Renoir art theft in Vienna and its connection to a Ukraine art dealer: On November 28, 2018 three well-dressed men in jackets and coats entered Vienna’s oldest auction house, the Dorotheum, just after sunset, and made off with a landscape painted by Pierre-Auguste Renoir titled Golfe, Mer, Falaises Vertes (English: Gulf, Sea, Green Cliffs, just ahead of the painting’s autumn sale. 

02.02.2019, ARCA: Art theft as a profitable career: An update on the Pierre-Auguste Renoir art theft in Vienna and its connection to a Ukraine art dealer. 

Government strengthens law to protect treasure finds: The government is proposing to strengthen the Treasure Act to include important finds that do not fit the current legal definition. Currently only items that are at least 300 years old and made substantially of gold or silver, or which are found with artefacts of precious metals, can be declared ‘treasure’ – and thus offered to a museum for first refusal. 

01.02.2019, Antiques Trade Gazette: Government strengthens law to protect treasure finds 

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker must close tax loopholes at Luxembourg freeport, MEP says: Members of the European Parliament are stepping up their fight against alleged money laundering and tax evasion through the use of freeports—high-security warehouses which hold art and other valuable assets, such as cars, wine and jewellery, tax free. 

31.01.2019, The Art Newspaper: European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker must close tax loopholes at Luxembourg freeport, MEP says 

Appeal to trade to help find large collection of stolen vintage costume jewellery: A large haul of vintage costume jewellery has been stolen from a car in Birmingham and its owner is appealing to the trade to help recover the items. 

31.01.2019, Antiques Trade Gazette: Appeal to trade to help find large collection of stolen vintage costume jewellery 

Historic enamel portrait by Henry Bone recovered and sold at auction: An enamel work by Henry Bone has been recovered by the ALR and sold at a UK auction house towards the end of last year. The portrait of Lieutenant-Colonel the Hon. Francis Wheler Hood is after an original by Thomas Stewardson, now at Loders Hall in Dorset. A pencil drawing by Bone of the same subject and dimensions is also at the National Portrait Gallery, London. 

30.01.2019, The Art Loss Register News: Historic enamel portrait by Henry Bone recovered and sold at auction 

Restitution Fears Unsettle the Trade in Tribal Art: Serge Schoffel placed a red sticker on the label for a 19th-century Dan Mano mask from Liberia. “This is my best sale,” he said. Mr. Schoffel, a dealer based in Brussels, who has been trading in tribal art for 11 years, had just completed negotiations over a cellphone with a French collector during the Friday preview of the Brafa art fair. “We’ve been talking to him for some time, but this is the first piece he’s bought,” Mr. Schoffel said, adding that the wooden mask was priced between 20,000 and 30,000 euros, or about $23,000 to $34,000. 

29.01.2019, The New York Times: Restitution Fears Unsettle the Trade in Tribal Art 

Tory peer involved in controversial sale of Iraqi antiquities: A pair of large Assyrian relief sculptures, similar to those recently destroyed by Islamic extremists in Iraq, has been quietly removed from an historic mansion in Scotland and sold abroad for £8m, despite concerns that they were part of Scotland’s heritage. The sellers were Newbattle Abbey College and the 13th Marquess of Lothian, better known as Michael Ancram, a Conservative peer and former party chairman. 

29.01.2019, The Art Newspaper: Tory peer involved in controversial sale of Iraqi antiquities 

Leonardo da Vinci’s thumbprint discovered on drawing in Royal Collection: A Leonardo thumbprint has been discovered on one of his works in Britain’s Royal Collection. The mark, from his left thumb (the artist was left-handed), is on a medical drawing. Alan Donnithorne, the collection’s former paper conservator, found that the reddish-brown ink of the print is the same as that on the drawing, so Leonardo presumably “picked up the sheet with inky fingers”. There is also a smudged mark of his left index finger on the reverse. 

28.01.2019, The Art Newspaper: Leonardo da Vinci’s thumbprint discovered on drawing in Royal Collection 

United States

Las Vegas-based artist claims that Ariana Grande plagiarised his work: A scene in Ariana Grande’s 2018 music video God is a Woman allegedly plagiarised the work of the Russian-American artist Vladimir Kush, according to a complaint filed by the artist yesterday (31 January) against the singer, her record label and others involved in making the video. 

01.02.2019, The Art Newspaper: Las Vegas-based artist claims that Ariana Grande plagiarised his work  

01.02.2019, Bloomberg Law: Ariana Grande Hit With Copyright Suit For ‘God Is A Woman’ Video 

Dutch royal family Rubens drawing sets $7m auction record: One of 13 works on paper consigned by a descendant of William II, reported to be Princess Christina, the sale was not without controversy in The Netherlands with members of one of the parties in the governing coalition calling for Dutch museums to have first refusal on the works before they were auctioned. 

30.01.2019, Antiques Trade Gazette: Dutch royal family Rubens drawing sets $7m auction record 

30.01.2019, Art News: Peter Paul Rubens Drawing Sells for Record-Setting $8.2 M. at Sotheby’s 

31.01.2019, Le Journal des Arts: Un dessin de Rubens vendu 8,2 millions de dollars lors d’une enchère controversée 

Experts Have Discovered a Previously Unknown Painting by Baroque Master Artemisia Gentileschi—and Now It’s for Sale at Sotheby’s: There’s a new addition to the list of known works by famed Baroque painter Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1654), and it’s coming up for auction tonight at Sotheby’s New York. The dramatically lit canvas, Saint Sebastian Tended by Irene, undeniably bears the hallmarks of the Old Master’s work, with its Caravaggesque lighting and focus on female agency, the wounded saint overshadowed by the two women ministering to his wounds. 

30.01.2019, The Art Newspaper: Experts Have Discovered a Previously Unknown Painting by Baroque Master Artemisia Gentileschi—and Now It’s for Sale at Sotheby’s 

James Turrell Asks MoMA PS1 to Close Installation: First, they came for the graffiti artists. Now it’s a famed installation maker. MoMA PS1 has temporarily closed an installation by the artist James Turrell after construction nearby crept high enough to be visible when experiencing the work, which is meant to offer an uninterrupted view of the sky. 

29.01.2019, The New York Times: James Turrell Asks MoMA PS1 to Close Installation 

More Than 75 New York Galleries Are Slammed With Lawsuits for Allegedly Violating the Americans With Disabilities Act: Dozens of New York galleries, including Marian Goodman, David Zwirner, and Gagosian, have been hit with lawsuits alleging they are violating the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) because their websites are not equally accessible to blind and visually impaired consumers. 

29.01.2019, Artnet: More Than 75 New York Galleries Are Slammed With Lawsuits for Allegedly Violating the Americans With Disabilities Act 

Is the US trustee system good for museums?: In the museum world, one of the standard ways of ensuring you are maintaining proper relationships with your trustees is asking them to fill out a self-evaluation form indicating the level of their engagement, including how much they give, their achievements, board and committee meetings attended. While those are sometimes awkward matters to discuss, there is usually a question that is even more awkward: ‘Please list your top three philanthropic causes.’ Received wisdom is that if you are not in their top three they should be eased off the board. It feels so much like asking someone you have started dating, ‘Do you see this going anywhere long-term?’; and has a similar potential to wreck what might be a valuable relationship. 

28.01.2019, Apollo: Is the US trustee system good for museums? 

World

New report says South Asian gallery sales are on the rise but does that ring true at India Art Fair?: As India Art Fair (IAF) opens its doors for its 11th edition it seems that the South Asian market might have finally found more solid ground. IAF (1-3 February)– India’s largest Modern and contemporary art fair–sees 75 galleries gather in New Delhi, many of which report an increased level of confidence in India’s art market compared with previous years. 

01.02.2019, The Art Newspaper: New report says South Asian gallery sales are on the rise but does that ring true at India Art Fair? 

Egypt’s treasures to receive a new $1 billion home: At the edge of the ancient pyramids of Giza, some 5,000 construction workers labor around the clock to finish the long-awaited Grand Egyptian Museum. Expected to open by the end of this year, the 5.2-million-square-foot structure will become the world’s largest museum devoted to a single civilization. 

31.01.2019, CNN Style: Egypt’s treasures to receive a new $1 billion home 

The market is hot for modern Indian art: In 1947, in the turbulent aftermath of Partition, six young men in Bombay – Krishnaji Howlaji Ara, Sadanand Krishnaji Bakre, Hari Ambadas Gade, Maqbool Fida Husain, Francis Newton Souza and Sayed Haider Raza – united to form the Progressive Artists’ Group (PAG). With leftist leanings and a desire to forge a new idiom freed from imperialist influences, they turned for inspiration to international modernism – above all, Picasso, Kandinsky and Klee – alongside South Asian high art and folk traditions. By the early 1950s they had been joined by Krishen Khanna, Vasudeo S. Gaitonde and Mohan Samant, while Ram Kumar, Tyeb Mehta and Akbar Padamsee also became closely affiliated with the group. Souza laid down their principles in a 1948 manifesto: ‘Today we paint with absolute freedom for content and technique, almost anarchic…’ 

31.01.2019, Apollo: The market is hot for modern Indian art 

Corporate arts patrons deserve praise not blame: Something to Answer For by PH Newby was the first winner of the Booker Prize in 1969. The book has faded from view, but the prize lives on as the UK’s best-known award for fiction. Next year, it will have a new sponsor for the first time since 2002, after Man Group, the listed hedge fund manager, decided to end its relationship with the prize. 

30.01.2019, The Financial Times: Corporate arts patrons deserve praise not blame 

Here Are the 4 Major Conundrums That Will Define the Art Market of the Future: Last week, globe-hopping gallerists, auctioneers, and art advisors converged on Barcelona for the city’s seventh annual Talking Galleries symposium, billed as a “think tank for galleries.” But unlike many art-world conferences, people didn’t just sit on stage for hours and politely agree. 

29.01.2019, Artnet: Here Are the 4 Major Conundrums That Will Define the Art Market of the Future 

Thief steals painting from Moscow gallery as witnesses watch: It was an art heist so audacious that it seemed certain to fail. And it failed spectacularly in less than 24 hours. On Sunday evening, a man in jeans and a dark shirt walked up to a painting by landscape artist Arkhip Kuindzhi in Moscow’s New Tretyakov Gallery and lifted it right off the wall. Then, as others looked on, he grabbed the frame in one hand and strolled out of the gallery. 

28.01.2019, The New York Times: A Man Walked Into a Moscow Museum, and Walked Out With a $182,000 Painting 

29.01.2019, Le Journal des Arts: La protection de la Galerie Tretiakov en question après un vol de tableau

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