On May 9, 2024, in a 6–3 decision, the United States Supreme Court held that the Copyright Act does not limit monetary damages for copyright infringement to those incurred within the three-year statute of limitations: “There is no time limit on monetary recovery,” the Supreme Court declared, “[s]o a copyright

Continue Reading The U.S. Supreme Court Puts the Remedial Cart Before the Horse:  No Time Limit Exists on Monetary Recovery for Timely Copyright Infringement Claims, but What Claims Qualify as Timely?

Just as Marcel Duchamp shocked the art world in 1917 with his absurdist creation of Fountain—a “readymade” sculpture consisting solely of an upside-down urinal with a signature on it—creators of non-fungible tokens (“NFTs”) are now pushing the boundaries of the conventional art world by creating works that exist only
Continue Reading The Unknown Legal Future of the Art Market’s New Favorite Medium: Non-Fungible Tokens (“NFTs”)

On November 24, 2020, parties to the 5Pointz litigation filed a Stipulated Settlement Agreement Resolving Plaintiffs’ Motion for Attorneys’ Fees and Costs (the “Agreement”), under which the defendant real estate developers agreed to pay over $2 million in attorneys’ fees and court costs to counsel for the aerosol artists of
Continue Reading Update: Attorneys Representing Artists in 5Pointz Litigation to Receive Over $2 Million in Attorneys’ Fees

This month, in Cohen v. G&M Realty L.P., the U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari to Jerry Wolkoff’s GM Realty, which had urged the Court to strike down certain “unconstitutionally vague statutory provision[s]” of the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (“VARA”) on the basis that they leave “property owners
Continue Reading Update: Certiorari Denied in 5Pointz Appeal

Last month, in the latest chapter of the ongoing legal saga arising from the whitewashing of “5Pointz,” the former aerosol-art mecca located in Queens, New York, the Second Circuit granted defendants’ motion to stay issuance of its appellate mandate pending defendants’ petition for a writ of certiorari in
Continue Reading 5Pointz Litigation SCOTUS-Bound?

Despite a recent decision in favor of municipal and property-developer defendants, a case pending in the Central District of Illinois serves as yet another warning to property developers to seek VARA waivers from artists up front.

In April 2019, 13 artists (the “Artist-Plaintiffs”) brought VARA claims against two defendants, the
Continue Reading Fighting Back Against the “New Normal” – Artists Assert VARA Rights to Protect Street Art

A case pending in the Western District of Pennsylvania should provide the opportunity for a federal judge to clarify the pleading requirements for the “recognized stature” element of a VARA claim.

In April 2018, street artist Kyle Holbrook and two arts organizations that he founded brought VARA claims against forty-four
Continue Reading Pennsylvania District Court to Rule on Whether Street-Artist VARA Plaintiff Must Plead Facts Supporting “Recognized Stature”of the Work

On April 1, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari in a series of Ninth Circuit cases that found that the California Resale Royalty Act (“CRRA”) was partially preempted by section 301(a) of the 1976 Copyright Act. Under the CRRA, secondary-market sellers of fine art would be required to
Continue Reading Update: U.S. Supreme Court Denies Certiorari in California Resale Royalty Case

Above: Plaintiff Chuck Close.
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The Ninth Circuit recently issued its decision regarding the validity of the California Resale Royalty Act (“CRRA”) in three consolidated appeals: Close v. Sotheby’s, Inc., No. 16-56234, The Sam Francis Foundation v. Christie’s, Inc., No. 16-56235 and The Sam Francis Foundation v. eBay
Continue Reading Update: Ninth Circuit Holds That CRRA Is Preempted by “First Sale Doctrine”

On June 13, 2018, Judge Frederic Block of the Eastern District of New York issued an impassioned decision upholding the $6.75 million damage award he granted the aerosol artists of 5Pointz in February 2018. The court denied the defendants’ post-trial motion to grant a new trial or vacate the February
Continue Reading Update: “5Pointz” Artists Hold On to Win