Saturday, September 20, 2014

Art & Law Drops in on SUNY Oswego


I gave a couple of talks yesterday at SUNY Oswego. My first was on contracts, IP and business entities for artists. The other talk was an artist talk on my projects. For the latter I focused on my 2000- present work and got great responses and questions. The question that I liked the most, and that still has me thinking (“What is the role of the artist now?”), is one that I posed as an application question for the 2015 Art & Law Program: “What is the role of the artist in the 21st Century?”

I’m still working on formulating my answer, but I can tell you this much, the role isn’t simply to “be an artist” and sell shit. That’s boring, and it’s not art.

Thank you to Rebecca Mushtare and the art department for inviting me up. I hope they’ll have me back.


The Legal Battle Over Vivian Maier’s Artworks

My thoughts on the Vivian Maier copyright controversy.


Collector Sues Artist for $1.2 Million

Apparently the artist, Danh Vo, is refusing to hand-over an artwork to collector, Bert Kreuk.


Art Student Project Protests University’s Response to Rape

A Columbia University student who says she was raped in her dorm room on campus is launching a performance art piece to call attention to her experience as well as the largerepidemic of sexual assault at US colleges. Emma Sulkowicz, now a senior majoring in visual arts, will carry a dorm room mattress with her everywhere she goes “for as long as I attend the same school as my rapist,” she told the Columbia Spectator. “The piece could potentially take a day, or it could go on until I graduate.”

Via Hyperallergic.


Now Accepting Applications for the 2015 Art & Law Program

Applications for the 2015 Art & Law Program are now being accepted.

Art & Law Program seminar on contemporary art, copyright and moral rights.

Art & Law Program seminar on contemporary art, copyright and moral rights.

Going on its 6th year, The Program seeks qualified candidates interested in the philosophical and practical relationship between art and law. For more information on The Program, please view the Program description.

The 2014 Program focused on tangible and intangible property and contemporary art. For the 2015 term, The Program will focus on property, government and violence, with a particular emphasis on contemporary art and artistic production. Although the 2015 Program outline is still under construction, we will look at specific issues such as constitutional interpretations of freedom of expression and dissent (the First Amendment), as well as gun rights (the Second Amendment). We will also analyze concepts of government in both symbolic and existing formats.

Accepted participants will be expected to review both written and visual material during the course of the 2015 Program.

The 2014 Art & Law Program crew at Denniston Hill artist residency.

The 2014 Art & Law Program crew at Denniston Hill artist residency.

Please note that there is a particular emphasis on the critique of current artistic, curatorial, theoretical and art historical practices and methodologies, particularly vis-a-vis legal frameworks and structures. Conversely, the use of law and jurisprudence as theory, practice and medium is explored. Please note that The Program does not focus on traditional and conventional critical theory, but rather investigates how the concept-practice of law disturbs the critical theory establishment and creates a new space and discourse for aesthetic and intellectual practices.

Application instructions may be viewed here.

Program and application inquiries should be sent via e-mail to:


Borges on the Task of Art

Jorge Luis Borges, 1921

Jorge Luis Borges, 1921

The task of art is to transform what is continuously happening to us, to transform all these things into symbols, into music, into something which can last in man’s memory. That is our duty. If we don’t fulfill it, we feel unhappy.


Werner Herzog, on self-reliance


Werner Herzog. Credit via

“The best advice I can offer to those heading into the world of film is not to wait for the system to finance your projects and for others to decide your fate. If you can’t afford to make a million-dollar film, raise $10,000 and produce it yourself. That’s all you need to make a feature film these days. Beware of useless, bottom-rung secretarial jobs in film-production companies. Instead, so long as you are able-bodied, head out to where the real world is. Roll up your sleeves and work as a bouncer in a sex club or a warden in a lunatic asylum or a machine operator in a slaughterhouse. Drive a taxi for six months and you’ll have enough money to make a film.”



Clancco, Clancco: The Source for Art & Law,, and Art & Law are trademarks owned by Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento. The views expressed on this site are those of Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento and of the artists and writers who submit to They are not the views of any other organization, legal or otherwise. All content contained on or made available through is not intended to and does not constitute legal advice and no attorney-client relationship is formed, nor is anything submitted to treated as confidential.

Website Terms of Use, Privacy, and Applicable Law.

Switch to our mobile site