Category Archives: Museums

Lessons in Collecting from the Museum of the Bible

Posted on: April 14, 2020 by Charlotte Dunn

The Museum of the Bible has been a site of continual controversy since its opening in November 2017. The issues it has faced range from alleged thefts and forgeries to the illicit trade in antiquities. More than anything else, the Museum’s difficulties have demonstrated the importance of careful provenance research before acquiring artefacts for a […]

Response of the museum sector to the coronavirus pandemic

Posted on: April 10, 2020 by Emily Gould

In a blog post last week, we discussed the many ramifications of the Coronavirus pandemic on contracts. The effects are being felt by businesses and individuals in all sectors across the globe, and museums are certainly not immune to the challenges presented. The inevitable cancellations of exhibitions involves disrupting contractual arrangements on many levels, from […]

An update on the Crimean Treasures in Amsterdam

Posted on: March 24, 2020 by Emilie Huisman-van Essen

Still pending in The Netherlands is the interesting case of the Crimean Treasures. After the Court of First Instance had ordered the repatriation of the museum objects to the Ukraine based on the 1970 UNESCO Convention, the Amsterdam Court of Appeal reversed that decision in an interim judgment of 16 July 2019. A recap of […]

Arts Council England appoints IAL to develop new guidance on restitution and repatriation

Posted on: March 19, 2020 by Kiri Cragin Folwell

On Monday 16 March, Arts Council England announced the appointment of the Institute of Art and Law (IAL) to develop new guidance for museums on the restitution and repatriation of cultural objects. The guidance, which will be published in Autumn 2020, will aim to encourage a more proactive and coordinated approach across UK museums by […]

Action at last? France renews promise to return looted artefacts to Benin

Posted on: January 23, 2020 by Charlotte Dunn

President Emmanuel Macron originally promised to return 26 artefacts, currently held in the Musée du Quai Branly–Jacques Chirac in Paris, to Benin in 2018. These objects were taken as spoils from the Kingdom of Dahomey in 1892, as part of French colonial military action. Macron’s promise was made in response to the publication of the […]

Appeal for Restitution of Nazi-Plundered Pissarro Centers on Application of Spanish versus U.S. Law

Posted on: December 24, 2019 by Stephanie Drawdy

A buyer who purchases stolen property does not receive good title – depending on the jurisdiction. The Cassirer family has learned this lesson all too well after nearly two decades attempting to reclaim a Nazi-looted painting by Impressionist Master Camille Pissarro. Earlier this year, a U.S. federal court in California awarded the Pissarro to a […]

Has moral activism increased Spanish caution for outward loans?

Posted on: December 10, 2019 by Adam Jomeen

Hot on the heels of its heavyweight (in every sense) Antony Gormley retrospective, London’s Royal Academy of Arts (RA) opened its second winter blockbuster – Lucian Freud: The Self-portraits – in late October to widespread critical acclaim.  Filling the RA’s smaller Sackler Wing (yes – they have one too), the show unites paintings, prints, drawings […]

To quote or not to quote – that is the question

Posted on: November 7, 2019 by Alexander Herman

As those who have followed our courses (especially our IP Diploma) will know, a big fanfare is often made about the possibilities of the ‘quotation’ exception introduced into UK copyright law five years ago. For institutions that are often users of copyright-protected material, like museums, galleries, archives and libraries, the new exception came with a […]

Collaboration thrives in the Nordic region

Posted on: November 5, 2019 by Emily Gould

The IAL was delighted to be invited to share some thoughts on current issues in art and cultural heritage law with museum professionals from Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden in the bi-annual Nordic Registrars’ Group meeting. The conference was held last month, on October 22nd and 23rd in the inspiring surroundings of ARoS Art Museum […]

Recent IAL training: British Museum, Oxford and Qatar

Posted on: October 29, 2019 by Alexander Herman

The past month has been a busy one at the IAL. Not only did we run our annual Diploma in Law and Collections Management in London and a Saturday Study Forum, but we also provided a series of in-house training sessions in the UK and Qatar. We began developing these sessions over the last year […]