Author Archives: Stephanie Drawdy

About Stephanie Drawdy

Stephanie is an artist and attorney licensed to practice in New York and South Carolina. She is the host of the Warfare of Art and Law podcast, available at warfareofartandlaw.com.

Unanimous verdict from US Supreme Court in Nazi-looted art case: the long-running Cassirer case continues

Posted on: April 25, 2022 by Stephanie Drawdy

The seventeen-year title dispute over a Parisian winter streetscape by Camille Pissarro has now tilted in favor of the heirs whose German-Jewish ancestor was forced to part with the masterwork during the Holocaust. On 21 April 2022, the United States Supreme Court unanimously vacated a judgment by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that had […]

Foundation’s arguments thwarted in New York case of Nazi-looted Schiele

Posted on: March 17, 2022 by Stephanie Drawdy

Just a year before the Spanish flu claimed him in 1918, Austrian Expressionist Egon Schiele used hues of orange and red to portray his wife as she looked away, hands folded (left). Some 20 years later in Nazi-occupied Vienna, this portrait would be looted. And now, over 80 years after that, the work is the […]

U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments in case of Nazi-looted Pissarro

Posted on: January 19, 2022 by Stephanie Drawdy

For just over one hour on Tuesday 18th January, the Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument centered on procedural issues that will decide the next steps in the protracted case involving a Camille Pissarro masterwork.[1] The painting, Rue Saint-Honoré, après-midi, effet de pluie, is currently held by Spain in its Thyssen-Bornemisza Museo […]

New York class action alleges NYPD treats art like litter

Posted on: August 4, 2021 by Stephanie Drawdy

On 10 April 2021, the New York City Police Department launched a city-wide graffiti clean-up campaign. One of its first orders of business: the documented destruction of a mural titled Death From Above that allegedly had been in place on a Brooklyn wall with permission for over a decade. The New York City Police Department’s […]

US Supreme Court remands Guelph Treasure case

Posted on: February 12, 2021 by Stephanie Drawdy

The much-anticipated ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court in the Welfenschatz (or ‘Guelph Treasure’) restitution case (previously discussed here) was issued on 3 February 2021, rendering precedent on the interpretation of the ‘expropriation exception’ of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA).[1] Enacted to lift the “baseline presumption of immunity” given to foreign states under the […]

U.S. financial crime regulations now reach antiquities trade and beyond

Posted on: February 1, 2021 by Stephanie Drawdy

A new year has swept in, bringing with it an expansion of U.S. federal anti-corruption / anti-money laundering laws. On 1 January 2021, America’s annual defense budget known as H.R. 6395, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 (NDAA), became law. The wide-reaching and significant reforms included in the NDAA range from corporate […]

JUST Act Report surveys efforts at justice for Holocaust survivors

Posted on: January 7, 2021 by Stephanie Drawdy

In March 2020, the U.S. State Department issued the ‘Just Act Report’, a 196-page document with a laudable goal – furthering long-delayed justice for Holocaust victims, survivors and heirs. It is described as an “essential tool” to show the U.S. Congress where restitution efforts are lagging across the globe. The rather disheartening results show a […]

U.S. Supreme Court declines to review 5Pointz ruling

Posted on: November 13, 2020 by Stephanie Drawdy

The 5Pointz case has now been confirmed as viable authority in favor of artists’ rights in the United States. In early October, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the petition for certiorari filed by developers Gerald Wolkoff and several of his real estate entities, thereby eliminating the last appellate hope the developers had to […]

Cassirer heirs may challenge ruling favoring Spanish foundation over Nazi-plundered Pissarro

Posted on: October 26, 2020 by Stephanie Drawdy

The Cassirer heirs recently received another negative ruling in their lawsuit to recover a Nazi-looted painting by French Impressionist Camille Pissarro, but this case has not yet ended. The heirs indicated their intent to request a rehearing of the Ninth Circuit’s holding that, under Spanish law, title to the Pissarro is rightly held by the […]

Guelph Treasure Appeal Pending in U.S. Supreme Court

Posted on: August 21, 2020 by Stephanie Drawdy

A collection of ecclesiastical art known as the Guelph Treasure (Welfenschatz) is at the center of a U.S. restitution claim brought by heirs of Holocaust victims who sold it during the Nazi reign, previously discussed here. Having held the highly valued collection for approximately six decades, Germany is unwilling to part with what it considers […]