6 July 2020

Art@Law | Constantine Cannon

Europe

Coronavirus: Arts sector applauds £1.6bn bailout: Cultural leaders have welcomed an unprecedented billion-pound bailout of the arts, which was hailed as a game-changer for the creative industries. Almost £900 million in grants is to be made available along with £270 million of repayable loans for cultural institutions, which have been warning that the sector was on the brink of destruction. 

06.07.2020, The TimesCoronavirus: Arts sector applauds £1.6bn bailout 

American collector to sue France over restitution of $1.7m Pissarro painting: The European Court of Human Rights is being called to examine an order by the French High Court for the restitution of a looted landscape painting by Camille Pissarro. 

02.07.2020, The Art NewspaperAmerican collector to sue France over restitution of $1.7m Pissarro painting  

02.07.2020, Le Journal des ArtsLa justice valide définitivement la restitution d’un Pissarro à une famille spoliée sous l’Occupation 

German government seeks to buy Hamburger Bahnhof museum from investor: The German government is in negotiations to buy the Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin after the museum’s owner, an Austrian property investor, said it will end the lease on the extension to the museum and demolish it to make way for new office buildings. 

01.07.2020, The Art NewspaperGerman government seeks to buy Hamburger Bahnhof museum from investor 

Spanish dealer claims to find long-lost Frida Kahlo painting: A Spanish art dealer named Cristian López claims that he has located the “holy grail” of Frida Kahlo’s oeuvre, the long-lost painting La Mesa Herida (The Wounded Table) from 1940 that went missing 65 years ago. The painting is currently in a warehouse in London, according to López, and its anonymous owner is requesting around $45m for it. Meanwhile, experts question the painting’s authenticity. 

01.07.2020, The Art NewspaperSpanish dealer claims to find long-lost Frida Kahlo painting 

Waning market for African artefacts? Controversial Benin bronze fails to sell at Christie’s: A bronze plaque made in the former Kingdom of Benin, which failed to sell at an auction in Paris last Monday, has reignited the debate over the market for cultural property removed from colonised Africa. The sculpture of a fish, which was consigned to Christie’s Arts of Africa, Oceania and North America sale in Paris, carried an estimate of €30,000-€50,000; the work was described in the sale catalogue as an Edo bronze plaque made in the Kingdom of Benin. 

30.06.2020, The Art NewspaperWaning market for African artefacts? Controversial Benin bronze fails to sell at Christie’s 

29.06.2020, The New York TimesDisputed African artefacts sell at auction 

Six arrested in France in connection with theft of Banksy’s Bataclan mural: Six people have been arrested in France over the theft of a Banksy mural from the Bataclan music venue in Paris. The work, a tribute to the victims of the 2015 Paris terrorist attack which left 90 concertgoers dead, was removed last year from a fire door at the venue by thieves armed with angle grinders. The theft was denounced across France, and the work was recovered from an Italian farmhouse earlier this month. 

29.06.2020, Art NewsSix arrested in France in connection with theft of Banksy’s Bataclan mural 

28.06.2020, The GuardianSix arrests in France over theft of Banksy artwork from Bataclan 

United States

Anatole Shagalov must pay Sotheby’s $2m for Keith Haring painting, judge rules: Sotheby’s has won a $2m summary judgement in its lawsuit against the art dealer Anatole Shagalov of Nature Morte gallery of Great Neck, New York (no relation to the Delhi gallery). 

03.07.2020, The Art NewspaperAnatole Shagalov must pay Sotheby’s $2m for Keith Haring painting, judge rules 

US Supreme Court agrees to hear Berlin museums’ appeal in lawsuit over restitution of medieval treasures to Jewish heirs: The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal from the German state museums in a lawsuit claiming the medieval church reliquaries known as the Guelph Treasure, which heirs say were taken from their Jewish families by the Nazis in 1935. The German reliquaries, including gilded works from the 11th to 15th centuries, are estimated to be worth at least €200m, and are overseen by the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (SPK) and held in the Applied Arts Museum in Berlin. 

02.07.2020, The Art NewspaperUS Supreme Court agrees to hear Berlin museums’ appeal in lawsuit over restitution of medieval treasures to Jewish heirs  

Colour balance: painter Pat Lipsky sues over digitally ‘distorted’ images of her work: Pat Lipsky, an artist associated with the Lyrical Abstraction and Colour Field movements, is known for her boldly coloured abstract paintings on often unprimed canvas. That vividness is such a signature element of her style that the artist filed a lawsuit on Monday against New York’s Spanierman Gallery and the online art sales platform Artspace, complaining that the images they are using to sell a 1969 painting she made have been digitally lightened beyond recognition as her work. 

02.07.2020, The Art NewspaperColour balance: painter Pat Lipsky sues over digitally ‘distorted’ images of her work 

Auction house seizure: a Roman marble portrait head of the Emperor Septimius Severus, circa 200 CE seized at Christie’s: An ancient Roman marble head was seized on the basis of a search warrant requested by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office on June 24th at Christie’s auction house based on evidence provided by the Italian Carabinieri for the Protection of Cultural Heritage, attesting that the portrait bust had been stolen from Italy in on 18 November 1985 before eventually landing in New York.   

01.07.2020, ARCAAuction house seizure: a Roman marble portrait head of the Emperor Septimius Severus, circa 200 CE seized at Christie’s 

World

Turkish government on collision course with UNESCO over turning Hagia Sophia into mosque: The Greek government says that Turkey will violate UNESCO’s conservation rules if President Recep Tayyip Erdogan moves ahead with plans to turn the historic Hagia Sophia site in Istanbul—currently a museum—into a mosque. 

03.07.2020, The Art NewspaperTurkish government on collision course with UNESCO over turning Hagia Sophia into mosque 

02.07.2020, ArtnetCould the Hagia Sophia lose its 80-year-old status as a museum? A top court in Turkey will decide 

‘The auction of the future is here’: Hats off to Sotheby’s for being the first to test out a digital-only, live-stream auction for the highest-priced art — and for passing with flying colours. At the start of its June 29 sale, auctioneer Oliver Barker, standing in front of several screens from mission control in London, announced that “The auction of the future is here.” 

02.07.2020, The Financial Times‘The auction of the future is here’ 

30.06.2020, Art NewsSotheby’s global hybrid online evening sale soars to $363.2 m. 

29.06.2020, The New York TimesFrancis Bacon triptych sells for $84.6 million 

30.06.2020, CNN StyleFrancis Bacon painting sells for $84M at first-of-its-kind virtual auction 

30.06.2020, The Art NewspaperBrave new world: Francis Bacon triptych sells for $84.5m in Sotheby’s first major live-streamed evening sale 

Phillips scored $41 million in a white-glove contemporary evening sale as the auction house got hip to new online landscape: Months ago, having a high-powered contemporary art auction in New York City seemed like a pipe dream. But July is here, and the major auction houses appear to have figured out how to sell art in a newly distanced social landscape through a combination of in-person specialists and bidders raising paddles via cyberspace. Days after the surprisingly lucrative Sotheby’s auction Monday, Phillips held a hybrid online and in-person affair in which each of the lots found a buyer—known as a “white glove” sale—en route to a haul of $34.7 million at the hammer, or $41.1 million with premium. The hammer total was smack dab in the middle of the $29.4 million low estimate and the $41.6 million high estimate. 

02.07.2020, ArtnetPhillips scored $41 million in a white-glove contemporary evening sale as the auction house got hip to new online landscape 

‘Broken’ heritage laws: Australia launches investigation after 46,000-year-old Aboriginal rock art is obliterated: A parliamentary enquiry will examine how the mining giant Rio Tinto obtained the legal right to destroy the ancient Juukan Gorge site. 

02.07.2020, The Art Newspaper‘Broken’ heritage laws: Australia launches investigation after 46,000-year-old Aboriginal rock art is obliterated 

Sotheby’s contemporary day sale nets $51.5 m., lead by Ryman and Asawa, young names see high results: Following Sotheby’s staggering $362.3 million evening sale, the market test continued into Tuesday’s contemporary day sale. 212 lots by postwar and contemporary brand names like Jean-Michel Basquiat, Robert Ryman and Ruth Asawa came to auction, realising a total sale price of $51.5 million and seeing an 83% sell-through rate overall. 

01.07.2020, The Art Market MonitorSotheby’s contemporary day sale nets $51.5 m., lead by Ryman and Asawa, young names see high results 

Undeterred by looming National Security Law, Hong Kong’s newest art fair draws nearly 3,000 visitors: With huge international art fairs a logistical impossibility, the Hong Kong Art Gallery Association explored what remains feasible with a small local art fair, Unscheduled (17 to 27 June). Undeterred by the looming National Security Law, which as of last Monday installed mainland-type prohibitions on political dissent, 12 galleries with spaces in Hong Kong organised solo booths in the Duplex Studio in the Police Headquarters Block at Tai Kwun Centre for Heritage and Arts.  

01.07.2020, The Art NewspaperUndeterred by looming National Security Law, Hong Kong’s newest art fair draws nearly 3,000 visitors 

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