Category Archives: Provenance

New issue of Art Antiquity & Law available now

Posted on: January 16, 2020 by Julia Rodrigues Casella Hommes

As we leave behind the festive season, the latest issue of Art Antiquity & Law has just been released in time for you to start the new year with the latest in-depth analyses from the world of art and cultural heritage law. Adam Jomeen writes about street photography and compares the legal treatments afforded to […]

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 […]

By description? Canadian judgment complicates art contracts

Posted on: December 2, 2019 by Charlotte Dunn

Legal cases involving questions of authenticity, attribution and provenance are generally not easily determined. However, in a recent Canadian case, the Court of Appeal for Ontario applied contract law to tackle (or avoid) the issue. The case involved a painting, entitled Spirit Energy of Mother Earth, purportedly by the renowned First Nations artist, Norval Morrisseau. […]

Japanese Museum claims title to the Reynolds painting stolen in UK

Posted on: October 1, 2019 by Makoto Shimada

According to recent articles in the Antiques Trade Gazette, Art Newspaper and several other English papers, a painting by Sir Joshua Reynolds stolen in the UK has ended up in Japan at the collection of the Fuji Tokyo Art Museum (“the Museum”). The Museum claims that it purchased the work with valid title. Facts In […]

Dispute over the Isleworth Mona Lisa goes to Italian courtrooms

Posted on: September 25, 2019 by Eleonora Chielli

The Court of Florence is dealing with a case involving the ‘Isleworth Mona Lisa’, a painting attributed to Leonardo, though with some uncertainty. Whilst the question of attribution is not the focus of this post, it should be noted that following a debate lasting for more than a century about the attribution of this painting, […]

A report from two major Holocaust-Looted Art Events in London

Posted on: September 17, 2019 by Emily Gould and Julia Rodrigues Casella Hommes

London played host earlier this month to two fascinating events relating to Holocaust-looted art and restitution. Both events were packed, truly marking the beginning of a new academic year and the return from summer holidays. IAL attended both events and here is our account of the enlightening discussions which took place. At the V&A, on […]

New York Appellate Court Upholds Purpose of HEAR Act: Austrian Performer’s Heirs Found to Have Superior Right to Looted Schiele Works

Posted on: August 23, 2019 by Stephanie Drawdy

Fritz Grünbaum was a clear target for the Nazis. He was a Jewish law school graduate and decorated World War I veteran turned pacifist and an outspoken man of the arts with a platform as a Viennese cabaret performer. On the day Hitler invaded Vienna, he entertained nightclub guests as he groped onto a darkened […]

An afternoon of ‘Art on the Move’ at Maurice Turnor Gardner

Posted on: June 25, 2019 by Julia Rodrigues Casella Hommes

Last Wednesday, the Institute of Art & Law together with Maurice Turnor Gardner hosted a number of talks and panels on the topic of ‘art on the move’ and the legal issues involved from title and export controls to bailment and the impact of Brexit. Speaking to a packed room, MTG’s and IAL’s teams were […]

Ownership of Nazi-Plundered Pissarro Goes to Spanish Foundation

Posted on: May 14, 2019 by Stephanie Drawdy

It’s a rainy winter day in Paris, 1897. A distinguished gentleman is standing at his easel with the curtains drawn, his eyes surveying the street below. As a painter myself, I like to imagine the excitement the Impressionist Master Camille Pissarro felt as he envisioned the composition of the scene that would become Rue Saint-Honoré, Après-midi, […]

The MET in the spotlight again: Due diligence dissected

Posted on: March 20, 2019 by Emily Gould

We reported late last year how busy the New York authorities have been in recent times in seizing and returning looted artefacts. The pattern has continued into the new year, with the widely reported return to the Egyptian Government of a first-century BC gilded coffin, acquired by the Metropolitan Museum of Art as the centre […]