ART AND MUSEUM LAW


Wiggin and Dana's Art and Museum Law Group represents museums, universities, and other cultural institutions, galleries and dealers in art, private collectors, insurers, foundations and national governments in the concerns unique to owners of art and artifacts.

We handle disputes over ownership and provenance, claims involving foreign and international law, the treatment of abandoned art loans, sales of forged or improperly accredited work, tax, gift and estate-planning matters, financial transactions, intellectual property issues, not-for-profit governance issues, government investigations including forfeiture issues, and the public relations and ethical considerations often associated with these matters.

We have assisted clients in a wide range of matters, including some of the most significant art law disputes to have emerged in recent years. Our Art and Museum Law group consists of experienced attorneys committed to providing our clients with superior service at competitive prices. We take a hands-on approach to our representation, maintaining frequent contact with clients, becoming knowledgeable about their particular circumstances and making ourselves readily available to answer any questions.

We have assisted clients in a wide range of matters, including:

  • Representation of a university in a dispute with a Latin American government over archeological artifacts
  • Representation of insurers in connection with a university's claims for coverage for damage to "fine arts"
  • Representation of a collector in disputes over provenance of artwork and furniture
  • Counseling on cultural property and provenance issues with regard to Asian jewelry
  • Representation of a Manhattan gallery owner in a dispute with an investor over joint ventures in various works of art
  • Representation of a university in a claim by a foreign citizen to a Van Gogh painting nationalized by Russia and received by the university via bequest
  • Representation of a private arts foundation in a dispute with a major art museum involving copyright issues and sales of reproductions of American modernist works
  • Representation of art dealers in dispute with the estate of a major artist over ownership and possession of commissioned art works
  • Representation of a president of a major New York gallery on trust and estate matters
  • Representation of a major private art collector in a dispute with a gallery over commissioned art works
  • Counseling an educational institution in the analysis of cultural property and provenance issues with regard to an offered gift of Tsarist objects d'art and European paintings
  • Representation of a bank in connection with loans secured by art as collateral
  • Representation of a preeminent abstract expressionist painter in art related litigation, establishment of a charitable foundation and estate planning
  • Representation of collectors and gallery owners in structuring gifts of art to a charity and family members


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