Art Law Report

REMINDER: Art Crime and Cultural Heritage: Fakes, Forgeries, and Looted and Stolen Art at NYU June 4-6

Posted by Nicholas O'Donnell on May 27, 2015 at 5:41 AM

I am looking forward to next week’s Art Crime and Cultural Heritage symposium at NYU next month. I will be on a panel discussing the Gurlitt case moderated by Mel Urbach, along with Chris Marinello and Wesley Fisher. The program is as follows, and promises to be a fascinating event.

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Topics: University of Kansas, Megan Fontanella, Jordan Arnold, Klein & Solomon LLP, International Foundation for Art Research, Jo Backer Laird, Amy Adler, Sandra Cobden, Alfred Flechtheim, Betty Little, NYU School of Law, Shawnee State University, Guggenheim Museum, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, Amr Al Azm, Christopher Robinson, Marla Diaz, ARIS Title Insurance Corporation, Judd Grossman, John Cahill, Alice Farren-Bradley, Inc., Boston University, Art Recovery Group, David Goldstein, Eleonora Nagy, Schiele, Jane C. H. Jacob, James Martin, Pryor Cashman LLP, Karl Geercken, Judith Pearson, Doreen Bolger, Kevin Ray, Museum of Modern Art, Peter Herdrich, Mel Urbach, ARIS, Chris Marinello, III, Pierre Ciric, Arader Galleries, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, William L Charron, Christie's Inc., On the Shore of the Seine, Spencer Tomkins, W. Graham Arader, K2 Intelligence, MaryKate Cleary, Laurie Rush, Modern Sculpture Conservation LLC, Ciric Law Firm PLLC; Holocaust Art Restitution Pro, lston & Bird LLP, James Butterwick, Auctionata, Restitution, Colleen St Onge, Jonathan Illari, President’s Cultural Property Advisory Committee, Asian Art Research & Appraisals, Sullivan & Worcester LLP, Events, Simon Hornby, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Bonnie Magness-Gardiner, Art Dealers Association of America Jane Levine, Jacob Fine Art, Wesley Fisher, Harry Ettlinger, Herrick Feinstein LLP, Baltimore Museum of Art, Portrait of Wally, Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens, Nicholas O'Donnell, National Stolen Art File and Art Crime Team, Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germa, Francis O'Connor, IFAR, Sotheby's, Bonhams, The Heritas Group, Ken Perenyi, Patricia J. Graham, Emily Kempin Professor of Law, Whitney Museum of American Art, Meridith Savona, Tim Carpenter, Vienna, Megan Noh, Butterwick Gallery LLC, Paysage Bords de Seine, Museum Security Network, Leopold Museum, Crozier Fine Arts Inc., Art Law Report, Mari-Claudia Jiménez, Sharon Flescher, Michael Danti, Holly Keris

Baltimore Museum of Art Wins Title to “Flea Market Renoir” Painting

Posted by Nicholas O'Donnell on January 10, 2014 at 7:18 AM

The Baltimore Sun reports that U.S. District Judge Judge Leonie Brinkema allowed the Baltimore Museum of Art’s motion for summary judgment at today’s hearing in Alexandria, Virginia. That means that the BMA is the owner of the painting, not claimant Martha Fuqua, who argued that she bought the painting at a 2009 flea market in good faith. Barring an appeal (or perhaps even with one), the painting will soon return to Baltimore from where it was stolen in 1951.

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Topics: hearsay, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Potomack Company, flea market Renoir, ancient documents, Der Spiegel, Martha Fuqua, Baltimore Museum of Art, Litigation, business records exception, summary judgment, Museums, Leonie Brinkema, Paysage Bords de Seine, FRCP 56

Hearing Tomorrow on Baltimore Museum of Art Claims to "Flea Market Renoir"

Posted by Nicholas O'Donnell on January 9, 2014 at 11:01 AM

Judge Leonie Brinkema will hold a hearing tomorrow morning in Alexandria, Virginia on the Baltimore Museum of Art's motion for summary judgment to claim ownership to an 1879 Renoir painting Paysage Bords de Seine that the museum maintains was stolen in 1951. Claimant Martha Fuqua filed a motion to strike the BMA's reply to her opposition, arguing that the museum was introducing new evidence. The court swiftly denied the motion, and noted that the museum was responding to arguments she made for the first time in her opposition to the summary judgment motion (but gave her permission to file a sur-reply).

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Topics: hearsay, authentication, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Potomack Company, flea market Renoir, ancient documents, Der Spiegel, Martha Fuqua, Baltimore Museum of Art, Litigation, business records exception, summary judgment, Museums, Paysage Bords de Seine, FRCP 56

Flea Market Renoir Battle Focuses on the Hearsay Rule

Posted by Nicholas O'Donnell on January 3, 2014 at 7:14 AM

The last remaining claimants for the 1879 painting by Pierre Auguste Renoir, Paysage bords de Seine that surfaced in the possession of a woman who claimed to have found it at a flea market, have filed summary judgment papers seeking final disposition of the case without need of a trial. The Baltimore Museum of Art has made its case that the painting was stolen from the museum in 1951, while Martha Fuqua alleges that she purchased it in good faith at a Virginia flea market in 2009 before attempting to sell it at the Potomack Company. The U.S. government seized the painting from the auction house and filed an interpleader action to determine the true owner; the other principle claimant (Fireman’s Fund Insurance) dropped out of the case last fall without explanation, apparently pursuant to an assignment. Heirs of the original donor to the BMA never responded or made claim to the painting. The case will now turn at summary judgment on the hearsay rule, a topic that have bedeviled generations of law students and lawyers.

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Topics: hearsay, authentication, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Potomack Company, flea market Renoir, ancient documents, Gurlitt, Martha Fuqua, Baltimore Museum of Art, Litigation, business records exception, summary judgment, Museums, Paysage Bords de Seine, FRCP 56

“Flea Market Renoir” Possibly Taken from Baltimore Museum Heads to Court

Posted by Nicholas O'Donnell on April 8, 2013 at 6:03 AM

The 1879 Pierre-Auguste Renoir painting entitled “Paysage Bords de Seine” that was discovered at a Virgina flea market, but which may also have been stolen from the Baltimore Museum of Art more than sixty years ago, is now the subject of a federal court case in Alexandria, Virginia. The United States has seized the painting and filed an action, known as "interpleader," to sort out the proper ownership of the work.

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Topics: Sadie A. May, Fireman’s Fund Insurance, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, interpleader, Seine, Amalie Adler Ascher, Rule 22 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Virginia, Herbert L. May, Manassas, Baltimore Museum of Art, 28 U.S.C. § 1335, Doreen Bulger, Adams Davidson Galle, The Potomack Company, Washington Post, Museums, Marcia “Martha” Fuqua, Paysage Bords de Seine, Civil Forfeiture, Ted Cooper

“Flea Market Renoir” May Have Been Stolen Decades Ago, Confusion Abounds

Posted by Nicholas O'Donnell on September 28, 2012 at 9:49 AM

What was the feel-good, ersatz Antiques-Roadshow story of the summer may soon be one of the most prominent art law issues in the country. A painting by Pierre-Auguste Renoir entitled “Paysage Bords de Seine” that was purchased at a flea market in 2010 for $7 and authenticated this year as genuine may turn out to have been stolen from the Baltimore Museum of Art.

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Topics: Forgery, Sadie May Collection, Antiques Roadshow, Renoir, Doreen Bolger, Collections, Baltimore Museum of Art, Standing, Washington Post, connoisseurship, Paysage Bords de Seine, Potomack Co.

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