ART AND MUSEUM LAW


Wiggin and Dana's Art and Museum Law Practice Group represents museums, universities, galleries, dealers, private collectors, insurers, foundations, and national governments in the concerns unique to owners of art and artifacts. In addition to domestic clients, we frequently advise foreign clients, both in connection with disputes or transactions in the United States, and when U.S. law becomes relevant in foreign disputes or transactions.

When disputes over art arise, clients turn to us for counsel and representation in matters involving provenance; restitution; cultural property issues; copyright disputes; claims involving theft, loss, and physical damage of art works; the treatment of abandoned art loans to museums and other institutions; sales of forged or improperly accredited work; and government investigations, including forfeiture issues. Our team of experienced art litigators—including the former U. S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Special Prosecutor for the FBI's Art Crime Team—has handled some of the most significant art disputes in recent years. We are comfortable in both the art world and the courtroom, and we take pride in working closely with clients on strategic decisions that occur at the intersection of those two worlds.

We also assist clients in a range of transactional matters related to art, including advising and structuring deals for the purchase and sale of art; agreements for site-specific artworks; agreements with artists' fabricators; exhibition and loan agreements; counseling institutions on the commercial use of art-related intellectual property; and structuring agreements between museums or between museums and other organizations.

Finally, we assist clients with inter-generational planning for art. Wiggin Art and Museum Law Practice Group attorneys serve as the trustees of estates with large art holdings; represent artists, dealers, and their heirs in estate planning matters involving decisions on the preservation and tax-efficient disposition of collections, whether modest or holding nine-figure values; and provide counsel on the establishment of private foundations and private museums, both inside and outside the US.

Advisories

05/01/2015 Art and Museum Law Update
11/04/2014 Who Owns the Monkey Selfie?
08/05/2014 Insurance News, Summer 2014 (Excerpt on Art Law)
04/26/2013 Is Art Infringement? (Cariou v. Prince, 2nd Cir., April 25, 2013)

Published Works

12/13/2017 Stolen Cultural Property: A Due Diligence Primer Delaware Lawyer
11/17/2017 US changes the rules for claims of Nazi-looted art against foreign sovereigns and foreign public museumsInternational Bar Association: Art, Cultural Institutions and Heritage Law
03/19/2015 Stolen Cultural Property: A Risk Management PrimerThe Legal Guide for Museum Professionals, Rowman and Littlefield

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

  • Representation of an auction-house owner in connection with a grand jury investigation
  • 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
  • Representation of insurers in connection with a claim for the loss of the entire contents of a warehouse holding a private collection and inventory
  • Representation of institutions creating or altering contracts for art loans and permanent installations
  • Representation of investors in an art investment fund
  • Representation of an artist accused of copyright infringement
  • Representation of a Philadelphia-area artist in connection with a dispute with a consignee

Representative matters include

  • Representation of London antiquities dealers in connection with seizure of a Persian artifact by a New York District Attorney
  • Defense of a European government and museum foundation in connection with quarter-billion-dollar restitution claims to medieval German art brought by U. S. and UK plaintiffs
  • Advising a European museum on U. S. legal issues connected with negotiated restitution of artwork
  • Representation of a university in a dispute with a South American government over archeological artifacts
  • Defense of a U. S. university against a claim by French citizen to a Van Gogh painting nationalized by Russia and received via bequest
  • Representation of an auction-house owner in connection with a grand jury investigation
  • Advising museums on acquisition issues, including cultural property, provenance, and export issues, ranging from Greek sculpture to Asian jewelry to European paintings
  • Representation of a Manhattan gallery owner in a dispute with an investor over joint ventures in art works
  • Representation of insurers in connection with a university's claims for casualty loss to "fine arts"
  • Representation of a private arts foundation in dispute with a major 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 major private collector in a dispute with a gallery over commissioned works
  • Representation of a bank in connection with loans secured by art as collateral
  • Representation of a prominent abstract expressionist in art-related litigation
  • Representation of insurers in connection with a claim for casualty loss of the entire contents of a warehouse holding a private collection and inventory
  • Representation of investors in litigation against a managing member of an art investment fund
  • Representation of an artist accused of copyright infringement
  • Representation of an artist in a dispute with a consignee
  • Representation of an insurer in the analysis of foreign cultural property and export laws
  • Representation of an insurer in connection with a Nazi-era restitution claim
  • Advising museums on the resolution of issues involving abandoned loans

Advising artists' foundations on responses to listing or sale of forged or misattributed works
 


CONNECTICUT   |   NEW YORK   |   PHILADELPHIA   |   WASHINGTON, DC   |   PALM BEACH
© 1998-2018 Wiggin and Dana LLP   |   Disclaimer Notice   |   Attorney Advertisement   |   Privacy Policy   |   Contact
wiggin.com
© 1998-2018 Wiggin and Dana LLP