Author Archives: Alexander Herman

About Alexander Herman

Alexander is the Assistant Director of the Institute of Art and Law. You can find him on Twitter @artlawalex

Report on Brexit seminar

Posted on: February 17, 2021 by Alexander Herman

Last week, we were happy to run a seminar called ‘Brexit, legal changes and the art world’ in conjunction with the London firm of Hunters Law LLP. The topic is obviously one of great interest these days as the UK grapples with a post-EU existence. There were a number of important changes that were brought […]

Looking ahead to 2021

Posted on: January 5, 2021 by Alexander Herman

If 2020 taught us anything it’s that making predictions is a futile – perhaps perilous – exercise. Looking back at our predictions for 2020 from last January only confirms this. Who would have thought that a global pandemic would tear through the fabric of our cozy existence, all the while upsetting a number of accepted […]

Year in review: 2020

Posted on: December 31, 2020 by Alexander Herman

And now for our year-in-review. What can be said about 2020 that hasn’t already been said? It was a challenging, unprecedented and heartbreaking year on the whole. The larger issues at play have certainly overtaken what additions and shifts may have occurred in the art law world. In fact, looking over the prognosis we made […]

UK government announces change to export licensing system

Posted on: December 22, 2020 by Alexander Herman

If the end of year is necessarily a busy time, this has only been accentuated by the chaos wreaked by the pandemic and, for those in the UK, the impending end of the Brexit transition period (which expires on 31 December). We can certainly say that the UK’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport […]

Macron, restitution and French bureaucracy

Posted on: December 17, 2020 by Alexander Herman

An interesting debate has taken place in France between its two chambers of Parliament: the Senate and the National Assembly. It has arisen in the context of a Bill presented at the National Assembly on 16 July to restitute to the countries of Benin and Senegal a total of 27 items held within French public […]

Brexit and importing cultural goods

Posted on: December 9, 2020 by Alexander Herman

The Brexit Transition Period is set to end on 31st December at midnight Brussels time, 11.00 pm in the UK – everyone knows that. But what many people do not seem to know, even those in the cultural sector, is that by happenstance a particular provision of EU law will come into effect in the […]

A tale of two protests: Museum protest then and now

Posted on: November 9, 2020 by Alexander Herman

Emery Mwazulu Diyabanza (left) is a man on a mission. A prolific protestor at museums in France and the Netherlands, he targets objects on display that originate from Africa, lifts them from their stands and parades them around the galleries while making pronouncements on the crimes of European colonialism. ‘Je part avec à la maison,’ he […]

Done right, selling museum pieces can work – but probably not with Michelangelos

Posted on: October 1, 2020 by Alexander Herman

This comment first appeared on The Art Newspaper website on 25 September 2020. It has been reproduced with the editorial staff’s kind permission. Is the Royal Academy of Arts (RA) going to sell its Michelangelo? It seems a preposterous proposition, but these are rather preposterous times. The idea, apparently floated by a handful of Royal […]

French law will finally tackle (some) African restitutions

Posted on: July 21, 2020 by Alexander Herman

Last week, the legal review of a bill under consideration by the French government was released. Following President Macron’s statement on the restitution of artefacts to African countries in November 2017 and the release of the controversial Sarr Savoy Report the following year, this is the first we’ve heard about specific legislation on the topic. […]

Fifty years on: the meaning of the 1970 UNESCO Convention

Posted on: June 18, 2020 by Alexander Herman

Amidst the sad turmoil (for some) and the uncertainty (for all) brought on by the pandemic and the resultant lockdown, it is perhaps more forgivable than usual to miss an important anniversary. I am referring here to the fact that 2020 marks 50 years since the adoption of the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting […]