Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Publication: Law in the Work of Félix González-Torres


Very happy to announce that the publication on Félix González-Torres and law is now available via the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy. Great essays by Sonia Kumari, Joan Kee, Martha Buskirk, Gregory S. Alexander, and Robert Hobbs, as well as a photo insert by Jim Hodges and two sample certificates of authenticity. There are also two introductions, including one that I co-authored with Cornell Law School Dean, Eduardo M. Peñalver.

I believe this is the first time an entire law review was dedicated to an artist, so it is and will be an important document for all of us in the arts and law to possess. I’m also quite sure FGT would be pleasantly surprised and touched by this.

More info on the publication here. If you would like to purchase a copy, you may do so via this webpage.


Jeff Koons, Just In Time?

Tulips, by Jeff Koons, permanently installed outside Guggenheim museum, Bilbao.

Tulips, by Jeff Koons, permanently installed outside Guggenheim museum, Bilbao.

Is Paris getting a “free” Jeff Koons? Possibly, although it seems not all is well between the city of romance and Jeff Koons.

But more interestingly is what French art critic, Judith Benhamou-Huet, calls “superconceptual”: the idea that what an artist is selling is only the idea. The purchaser, or in this case, the “donee,” has to foot the bill for production of the artwork. Is Koons on to something? Made-to-order art? Just-in-time? Could be, and could be the reason Koons has laid off some of his painting staff.


BREAKING: In Matal v. Tam, SCOTUS holds that disparagement provison is unconstitutional

Opinion hot off the press here.

From today’s opinion by Justice Samuel Alito (for four justices) in Matal v. Tam, the “Slants” case:

[The idea that the government may restrict] speech expressing ideas that offend … strikes at the heart of the First Amendment. Speech that demeans on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, age, disability, or any other similar ground is hateful; but the proudest boast of our free speech jurisprudence is that we protect the freedom to express “the thought that we hate.”

Eugene Volokh, one of the lead attorneys for The Slants, opines here.

NPR here.

The Slants tweet here.



Architectural Firm Sued for Copyright Infringement…Again.

Courtesy of Joe Mabel, via Wikipedia.

Courtesy of Joe Mabel, via Wikipedia.

Didn’t this already happen once to Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, like in 2004? Yes, you can read my thoughts about that lawsuit here (around page 3).

But this is a new copyright infringement claim filed also against SOM, in the Southern District of New York, on June 14th of this year. You can read more about it and the complaint here.


Can the Heavy Metal Horns Be a Registered Trademark?

The author giving us the heavy metal horns. Infringing?

The author giving us the heavy metal horns. Infringing?

Here’s three reasons why Gene Simmons will fail (generic, association, and enforcement), via the LA Times. If you’re looking for more laughs, read Wendy Dio’s and Nikki Sixx’s thoughts on Simmons’ trademark extremism.


Philanthropist Donates $100M from Artwork to Combat Mass Incarceration

In the so-called “artworld,” Agnes Gund certainly needs no introduction. She may also have just made quite an entrance into the legal world.

Ms. Gund has donated $100 million to initiate the Art for Justice Fund, an nonprofit formed to combat mass incarceration. “The criminal justice system in its current state – particularly in its treatment of people of color – is unfair and unjust,” said Ms. Gund.

Ms. Gund is partnering with the Ford Foundation and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, a nonprofit with a successful record of managing and advising on complex, multi-million dollar philanthropic projects. According to the Ford Foundation,

The Art for Justice Fund will make grants to organizations and leaders doing impactful and cutting-edge work to reform the criminal justice system. Grants will seek to safely reduce jail and prison populations across the country, while strengthening education and employment opportunities for people leaving the system. The fund will also support art-related programs that expose the injustice of mass incarceration and its impact on individuals and communities around the country.

More on this via the Ford Foundation website.


Did Video Kill the Courtroom Sketching Star?

Once a thriving art form, courtroom cameras have decreased but not completely ousted the need for courtroom sketch artists. The ABA gives a great overview of the rise and current status of the courtroom artist in both state and federal courts.


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