The Art Law Podcast hosts discussions about topics at the intersection of art and law with art lawyers Steve Schindler and Katie Wilson-Milne and their distinguished guests.
Surprise! NYC Repeals Auction Regulations
14:39Steve and Katie give a brief update on New York City’s recent repeal of its regulations governing auctioneers and auction practices. These regulations provided consumer protections by enforcing a measure of transparency into the auction process, such as requiring auctioneers to publicly disclose when they had a financial stake in an object being sold. Interestingly, major stakeholders appeared surprised by the repeal, which they had not requested and seemed indifferent about.
Anti-Money Laundering Update: FinCEN's Surprising Conclusion and the Impact of Russian Sanctions on the US Art Market
32:23Susan Mumford and Chris King, co-founders of ArtAML, return to the Podcast and talk with Steve about the recent release by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network ("FinCEN") of its “Study of the Facilitation of Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism through the Trade in Works of Art." To the surprise of Steve and his guests, FinCEN concluded that there is limited evidence of money laundering and little risk of terror financing through the sale of high value art. The discussion focuses on the findings of the study, and its implications, particularly when compared with the existing AML regulations covering the art market in the UK and the EU. (Susan and Chris discussed these requirements with Katie and Steve on the November 1, 2021 episode entitled: “How Anti-Money Laundering Regulations are Hitting the Art Market in the United Kingdom and What Participants Can Do to Comply.”) Recorded just days after Russian troops invaded Ukraine, the conversation turned to the impact that sanctions against Russia and its oligarchs are likely to have on the high-value art market, and what art market participants must do to not run afoul of these sanctions.
Turkey’s Quest for the Stargazer: Part 2
56:22With Katie on a parental leave, Steve speaks with Herrick Feinstein’s Victor Rocco about his firm’s representation of the Republic of Turkey in litigation brought by Turkey to possess a millennia-old Anatolian marble statue (the Stargazer) owned by Michael Steinhardt and sold by him through Christie’s. (We previously had counsel for Christie’s and Steinhardt on the podcast.) After a trial in the Southern District of New York, Turkey lost for the primary reason that they could not provide facts supporting their claim to ownership of the Stargazer, specifically that it was stolen from modern day Turkey after 1906. Turkey has appealed that decision, and Victor and Steve discuss the trial and Turkey’s arguments on appeal.
Skepticism and Optimism Around Art NFTs - Revisited
1:03:44In a re-release of last June's episode, Katie and Steve speak (again) with digital art and NFT enthusiast Jason Bailey about the sudden rise of NFTs in the art world, what they really are, why they have value, and who is interested in them and why.
Turkey’s Quest for the Stargazer
51:28Katie and Steve speak with veteran cultural property and art lawyer, Tom Kline, about his representation of Christie’s and Michael Steinhardt in litigation brought by Turkey to possess a millennia-old Anatolian marble statue (the Stargazer) owned by Steinhardt and sold by him through Christie’s. After a trial in the Southern District of New York, Turkey lost for the primary reason that they could not provide facts supporting their claim to ownership of the Stargazer, specifically that it was stolen from modern day Turkey after 1906.
How Anti-Money Laundering Regulations are Hitting the Art Market in the United Kingdom and What Participants Can Do to Comply
1:06:37Steve and Katie talk to Susan Mumford and Chris King, co-founders of ArtAML, about the recent roll out of AML regulations covering art market participants in the United Kingdom, who is implicated, how they can comply, and what this means for art businesses and the culture of secrecy in the art market generally. The requirement to determine and seek documentation of the ultimate beneficial owner on each end of the transaction is something financial institutions have long done, but not art dealers. ArtAML is an online platform designed to help art market participants comply with their legal obligations of due diligence and documentation. This conversation is of particular interest to those in the United States as the United Kingdom is the second largest art market outside the United States, and we expect AML regulations to roll out to the art market in the United States soon.
Fair Use and Andy Warhol: The Line Between Appropriation, Copying, and Inspiration Is Not Clear
1:18:04Katie and Steve finally tackle the evolving area of fair use as a defense to copyright infringement with Luke Nikas, attorney for the Andy Warhol Foundation and Partner at Quinn Emanuel. Luke represents the Foundation in its ongoing litigation with photographer Lynn Goldsmith about Warhol’s use of Goldsmith’s photograph of the artist Prince as an artist study for a series of screen prints. Goldsmith claims Warhol infringed her copyright in the original photograph. The Warhol Foundation says Warhol’s use of the photograph is fair use under the Copyright Act. The trial court agreed with the Warhol Foundation and the Second Circuit recently agreed with Goldsmith. Katie, Steve, and Luke discuss this complicated area of law and how artists navigate (or don’t) around it.
Moral Rights Around the World: Two Case Studies
1:19:26Steve and Katie speak with legal scholar Mira Sundara Rajan regarding the international landscape for artist moral rights protections, including the adoption of moral rights laws in the developing world, common law versus civil law jurisdictions, and the connection between moral rights and cultural heritage concerns. Steve, Katie, and Mira dive into two case studies: the Indian case Amar Nath Sehgal v. Union of India (2005) involving government removal of and damage to famous murals from a government building and the more recent controversy surrounding the removal of the Picasso stone murals on the Y-Block government buildings in Oslo, Norway.
New and Impending Art World Money Laundering Regulations
1:06:02Steve and Katie speak with British art lawyer and General Counsel of Phillips auction house Martin Wilson about European anti-money laundering regulations applicable to art market participants and their recent implementation in the UK. Generally, these regulations require art dealers, galleries, and auction houses to register with the government and undertake due diligence on every art transaction over a certain threshold amount, including with respect to the identity of all ultimate beneficial owners of the transacting parties. Steve, Katie, and Martin discuss the practicalities of compliance, the general secrecy of the art market and the reasoning behind such regulations, and Martin’s recently published book, Art Law and the Business of Art. Steve and Katie also discuss the anti-money laundering regulatory environment in the United States as it applies to the art market and what may be just around the corner.