legal battles

legal battles

After Lengthy Legal Fight, Nazi–Looted Poster Trove to Be Sold at Guernsey’s

8 Photos

Cocaine, by Lode, 1924

Though there have been a number of drawn-out legal battles over Nazi–looted art in recent years, few have been as involved as the saga of the enormous Hans Sachs poster collection. From the lowest German court to the highest, Peter Sachs pursued the return of his father’s 4,344 surviving posters, which were being held by the German Historical Museum in Berlin. The collection was finally recovered after seven years of fighting last March and roughly 3,700 will be up for auction starting next week through New York’s Guernsey’s auction house. Read More

legal battles

Photographer Sues Sculptor Ivan Navarro and Paul Kasmin Gallery, Alleging Copyright Infringement

Navarro. (Courtesy Patrick McMullan)

Photographer Rodrigo Pereda is suing artist Ivan Navarro and his New York gallery, Paul Kasmin, in federal court, alleging that they infringed on his copyright in a number of instances by allowing his work to be published in and distributed to various publications, without his permission and without credit. He says that he was deprived of his typical licensing fee and that his images were used to boost Mr. Navarro’s career.

In one case, Mr. Pereda alleges, Mr. Navarro and the gallery allowed ARTnews to run an image that he shot of one of Mr. Navarro’s light sculptures in an article without his permission.

Mr. Navarro’s defense? He says that Mr. Pereda didn’t actually take the photo in question, and that Mr. Pereda was just his assistant, and thus wouldn’t have retained copyright to any images that he shot. The case, which seeks $150,000 per each of three claims of infringement, raises some interesting questions about the nature of the relationships between artists and those they hire to help complete their projects in a world where agreements often occur over nothing more than a handshake. Read More

legal battles

Pussy Riot’s Russian Lawyers to Hold Panel at NYU School of Law [Updated]

Pussy Riot. (Courtesy Pussy Riot Facebook page)

Pussy Riot are the subject of a panel at New York University School of Law, “Pussy Riot and Protest: The Future of Dissent in Putin’s Russia and Beyond—A Conversation with Pussy Riot’s Russian Attorneys,” which will be held on Friday, Sept. 21, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Three members of the Russian punk band were arrested in March when they gave a short spirited performance at Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior, then found guilty of “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” and sentenced to two years in prison. Read More

legal battles

Collectors Claim New York Gallery Swiped Their Rockwells

Norman Rockwell, 'Concert on the Steps of a Plantation, Study,' 1934. (Courtesy Artnet). (This work is an example of the work of Norman Rockwell and is not in dispute.)

Two art collectors allege that a New York-based gallery swindled them of four paintings by Norman Rockwell, the Courthouse News Service reports.

The collectors—Larry Kritcher, of Florida, and Eve Thyrum, of Texas—claim that in 1995, they consigned five paintings to Manhattan gallery Illustration House, the defendant, and while one was sold in 1996 for $9,000, of which Mr. Kritcher and Ms. Thyrum received $7,785, they haven’t heard a peep from the art dealer about the other four works for 16 years. Read More

legal battles

Court: Edward Fagan, Disbarred Lawyer, Can’t Rep Organization in Nazi-Looted Art Case

Edward Fagan on Czech Television

Edward Fagan, the disbarred attorney who has championed the return of Nazi-looted artwork to Holocaust survivors and their families, and won big settlements in the process, has hit a roadblock in his latest case, this time against the Czech Republic in the Southern District of Florida. According to the Courthouse News Service, the court ruled that, because he has been disbarred, he cannot appear pro se—representing the organization he co-owns, as a plaintiff in the case. Read More