On February 4, 2022, the Treasury Department published its Study on the Facilitation of Money Laundering and Terror Finance Through the Trade in Works of Art (the “Report”).[1] To the surprise of many and the relief of the U.S. art market, the Report concluded that there was no immediate
Continue Reading U.S. Treasury Study Rejects Immediate Need for New Regulation of Art Market

As previously reported on this blog, non-fungible tokens (or “NFTs”) recently emerged as one of the hottest new items on the art market—artists, auction houses, museums, sports organizations and others have jumped at the chance to create and sell their own versions of these unique tokens.  But even as
Continue Reading NFT Update:  5 Recent Lawsuits Show a Glimpse into Future Legal Battles Involving NFTs 

We recently reported on the Warhol Foundation’s petition to the United States Supreme Court to review the Second Circuit’s decision in Andy Warhol Found. for Visual Arts, Inc. v. Goldsmith, 11 F.4th 26 (2d Cir. 2021).  On March 28, 2022, the Supreme Court granted certiorari, which means the Court
Continue Reading SCOTUS Update: U.S. Supreme Court Will Hear Warhol v. Goldsmith Copyright Case Next Term

As many know by now, non-fungible tokens (“NFTs”) are unique units of data stored on a blockchain that have become an increasingly popular way to buy and sell artwork (as well as all kinds of other things).  Although NFTs have existed since around 2014, the NFT market exploded last year,
Continue Reading Taking the “Fun” Out of Non-Fungible Tokens: Could Securities Laws Apply to NFTs?

In a controversial decision in March 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that a 1984 series of silkscreen paintings by the pop artist Andy Warhol depicting the musical legend Prince (the “Prince Series”)—based on a 1981 photograph of Prince by Lynn Goldsmith (the “Prince
Continue Reading Prince, Prince, Prints: Will the Supreme Court Revisit Fair Use?

On June 8, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled in Beierwaltes v. Federal Office of Culture of the Swiss Confederation that the temporary seizure in Geneva of antiquities belonging to Colorado-based art collectors conducted by Swiss authorities, as part of a Swiss police investigation,
Continue Reading Swiss Miss: The Second Circuit Rejects Application of Expropriation Exception to Seizure of Antiquities by Swiss Law Enforcement Officers

For those who believe that one today is worth two tomorrows, prejudgment interest offers a significant judicial remedy. In an unprecedented holding on July 12, 2021, the Commercial Division of the New York State Supreme Court, County of New York, applied the prejudgment rule in favor of the rightful owners
Continue Reading UPDATE—New York Court Awards Statutory Prejudgment Interest to Grünbaum Estate’s Heirs

On April 2, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled in favor of the Metropolitan Museum of Art when it held in a summary order that the Met’s use of a 1982 photograph of famed guitarist Eddie Van Halen (the “Photograph”) in an online catalogue
Continue Reading You Really Got Me: Second Circuit Rules in Favor of Met Museum in Fair Use Case Involving Photograph of Van Halen

On June 1, 2021, Michael McLeer, a New York City-based street artist who goes by “Kaves,” filed a putative class action in the Eastern District of New York against the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) and the City of New York.[1] McLeer alleges that the NYPD’s graffiti cleanup
Continue Reading American Graffiti: Artist Moves to Protect Street Art Across New York City

On February 3, 2021, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously in favor of Germany in a dispute over whether American courts may preside over a lawsuit brought by the heirs of German Jewish art dealers who alleged that the Nazi regime coerced the 1935 sale of certain artworks.

Background

As
Continue Reading The U.S. Supreme Court Unanimously Holds in Favor of Germany and Against Heirs of German Jewish Art Dealers in Case Involving Nazi-Era Sale of Guelph Treasure