29 June 2020

Art@Law | Constantine Cannon

Europe

Paris dealer who sold golden sarcophagus to New York’s Metropolitan Museum charged with fraud and money laundering: The French dealer Christophe Kunicki, an expert on Mediterranean archaeology, was charged in Paris on Friday with gang fraud and money laundering. Kunicki and his husband and associate Richard Sampaire, who was also charged, were released Friday night under judicial supervision by the Paris judge Jean-Michel Gentil. 

27.06.2020, The Art NewspaperParis dealer who sold golden sarcophagus to New York’s Metropolitan Museum charged with fraud and money laundering 

26.06.2020, Le Journal des ArtsTrafic d’antiquités, le marchand David Ghezelbash est sorti libre de sa garde à vue  

24.06.2020, The Art NewspaperFormer Louvre curator among five arrested in Paris in antiquities trafficking investigation  

24.06.2020, Le Journal des ArtsTrafic d’antiquités : coup de filet dans le monde des antiquaires parisiens  

23.06.2020, ARCAThe Cost of Trinkets: France detains five art market actors in relation to a network believed to be trafficking in conflict antiquities  

Christie’s merges Impressionist, Modern and contemporary art departments into one as it restructures and cuts costs: Christie’s is restructuring its operations, combining its Impressionist and Modern and Post-war and contemporary art departments into one 20th and 21st Centuries department. The new team will be led by Alex Rotter, as chairman based in the US, and Giovanna Bertazzoni, as vice-chairman in Europe.  

26.06.2020, The Art NewspaperChristie’s merges Impressionist, Modern and contemporary art departments into one as it restructures and cuts costs  

National museum in Stockholm to return stolen 16th-century painting to Poland: The Nationalmuseum in Stockholm says it will return a painting by the School of Lucas Cranach the Elder to a museum in Poland after new documentation has shown that the work was stolen after the Second World War. 

23.06.2020, The Art NewspaperNational museum in Stockholm to return stolen 16th-century painting to Poland

United States

Met plans to reopen flagship building on 29 August after five-month shutdown: The Metropolitan Museum of Art says it plans to reopen its flagship building on Fifth Avenue on 29 August after a five-month shutdown with two new exhibitions that had been deferred because of its closing in response to the coronavirus in mid-March. 

24.06.2020, The Art NewspaperMet plans to reopen flagship building on 29 August after five-month shutdown  

23.06.2020, The New York TimesMet Museum plans to open in late August  

The ACLU is suing Miami Beach for censoring a memorial portrait of a black man who was killed by police: The American Civil Liberties Union is suing the city of Miami Beach for censoring a painting by artist Rodney “Rock” Jackson that depicted Raymond Herisse, a Black man who was killed by Miami Beach police in 2011. 

23.06.2020, ArtnetThe ACLU is suing Miami Beach for censoring a memorial portrait of a black man who was killed by police 

23.06.2020, The Art NewspaperAlleging censorship, ACLU sues Miami Beach for removal of painting memorialising the police shooting of Raymond Herisse  

Charging Bull, symbol of Wall Street’s roaring market, will remain in place after a vote nixes New York mayor de Blasio’s plan to move it: The Public Design Commission of New York, which reviews the installation of all artworks on city-owned land, has rejected mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to relocate Charging Bull, the famous bronze statue by Arturo Di Modica, to the New York Stock Exchange. The artist, who spent $350,000 to make and install the sculpture as a guerrilla artwork in 1989, had argued that moving it would transform it into an advertisement for the stock exchange, which would violate his copyright. 

23.06.2020, ArtnetCharging Bull, symbol of Wall Street’s roaring market, will remain in place after a vote nixes New York mayor de Blasio’s plan to move it 

World

Russian theatre director Kirill Serebrennikov found guilty of fraud and ordered to pay $1.85m in damages to culture ministry: The theatre director Kirill Serebrennikov and two other people have been found guilty of embezzling Russian government funds while staging a contemporary arts festival. The group were given suspended sentences by a Moscow court on 26 June, and were also ordered to pay 129m rubles ($1.85m) in damages to the culture ministry. 

26.06.2020, The Art NewspaperRussian theatre director Kirill Serebrennikov found guilty of fraud and ordered to pay $1.85m in damages to culture ministry  

Cash points – thoughts on a healthier future for museum fundraising: At the start of this year, the dominant debate in the world of arts fundraising was about the ethical standards of organisations accepting sponsorship and donations from private sources. This debate had peaked in 2019 with no clear resolution and, for a while, it masked the reefs and shoals ever present below the surface: the underlying issues facing museums and other not-for-profit arts organisations. 

26.06.2020, ApolloCash points – thoughts on a healthier future for museum fundraising  

Auction houses tear up the rule book: Auction houses furloughed staff, postponed events and moved sales online. Directors and specialists were forced to question how they sourced, marketed and sold works in a global health emergency. The past three months have been a concentrated phase of experimentation, accelerating shifts that most had assumed would take years. But as the world tentatively emerges from lockdown, will the auction houses and their clients embrace innovations that were forged in adversity — or demand a return to the status quo ante? 

23.06.2020, The Financial TimesAuction houses tear up the rule book  

Facebook, citing looting concerns, bans historical artifact sales: Responding to criticism that its site has become a bazaar for the sale of looted Middle Eastern antiquities, Facebook said it would remove any content “that attempts to buy, sell or trade in historical artifacts.” 

23.06.2020, The New York TimesFacebook, citing looting concerns, bans historical artifact sales 

24.06.2020, ArtnetFacebook, a longtime hub for the illicit antiquities trade, bans the sale of historic artifacts on the platform 

24.06.2020, The Art NewspaperFacebook and Instagram ban trading of historical artefacts 

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