Friday, September 24, 2021
 

Artist Ordered to Produce Artwork; Gallerist Responds


In June, a Danish-Vietnamese artist, Danh Vō, lost a case against collector Bert Kreuk in a ruling by a Rotterdam court which ordered the artist to produce, under Kreuk’s oversight, a “large and impressive” artwork to be delivered to the collector by July 8, 2016. In the suit, filed in September 2014, Kreuk claimed that Vō agreed to produce one or more new works for a 2013 exhibition, titled “Transforming the Known,” for the Gemeentemuseum in the Hague, which Kreuk would then acquire. Instead, Vō loaned an existing work, which Kreuk still holds (and has now placed an injunction on for attorneys’ fees). The court did not award Kreuk the €898,000 he claimed in damages; instead, Kreuk was ordered to pay €350,000 for the new work and to return the loaned work. Vō responded to the ruling with a pledge to appeal, as he told The Art Newspaper, “I will appeal the decision on the shortest possible notice.  I believe that my artistic integrity has been violated by the court, ordering me to produce a ‘large and impressive work’ for Kreuk. I am happy that Kreuk’s seizure of my work, Fiat Veritas, at the museum has been lifted.” This week, Vō’s gallerist and co-defendant, Isabella Bortolozzi, released a statement criticizing the ruling and discussing the effect decision could have on the freedom of expression beyond the Dutch legal system. While American courts are reluctant to remedy the breach of service contracts with specific performance, the case highlights the difficulty courts face given the nature of art production in a market which extends enormous value to the aura of individual artists.

More via Blouin ArtInfo.

 

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