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La Gioconda in an extraordinary adaptation · Kazan, Russia · Photo by Gerhard Guffler
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Shared art - Elevator door in Hotel Lebua at the State Tower, Bangkok, Thailand.
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Experts. National Museum of China in Beijing. Photo by Gerhard Guffler
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The german Masterpainter Philipp Weber in New York City
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Spectacular location: The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, Spain
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Preparing for the photoshooting - young model in Seoul, South Korea
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Art that lives. Spanish children in front of a work of the master Antonio Castello Avilleira. Photo by Martin Llamedo
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Ad Reinhardt: Blue Paintings - David Zwirner Gallery, New York City
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Art, well-dosed. Devotional items at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao.
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Contemporary Art at the National Museum of China in Beijing
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Street Art. Bordeaux/France. New harbour area. Photo by Nyx
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Fantastic multi-media presentation by TeamLab (Japan) at Pace Gallery in Beijing · Photo by Erik Olsson
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The triple Helnwein. Discovered at Modernism, San Francisco · Photo by Jon Kim
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Hidden view to North Korea? Youngeun Museum - Gyeonggi-do, South Korea. Photo by Takashi Moto
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Exciting neighborhood: street art and commerce - discovered in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.
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Escape · Fondation Maeght · Photo by Takashi Moto
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Discovery in a gallery in Stockholm: The daughter of the famous ceramist Leo Grilli from Gubbio, Umbria.
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Impressive typography in Seoul-Jikhalsi, South Korea · Photo by Takashi Moto
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In search of identity. Detail of Alexander Timofeev "Beginning" · Oil on canvas, 100 x 100 cm, 2015.
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What does Marylin think? Impression from the Halcyon Gallery, London
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A wedge? Outstanding architecture! The new area in the Hermitage. Photo by Takashi Moto.
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Grandiose swing: Church of St. Michael, Hamburg. Photo by Gerhard Guffler.
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Sculpture of sitting men, France. Photo by Anja Helmchen.
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Lively streets in New York City. Photo by Mick Rogers.
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Accord. Städel-Museum, Frankfurt/Germany · Photo by Takashi Moto
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The truck. Christmas. New York City. Photo by Vince Ryan
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Currently out of Malaga/Spain: masterful sensitive drawing of the artist Aurelio Rodriguez Lopez.
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West meets east. Shopping in Guangdong, South Korea. Photo by Kwon KyungYep
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A touristic reminiscent of a great artist. Discovered at Central Park in New York City. Photo by Danielle Lemond
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Re-use: Work aid for the German painter Philipp Weber. Photo: Johannes Mencke
image of the week

Resale rights for artists: a worthy debate

Screen Shot 2018-08-08 at 9.49.59 AMThe sale of the painting “Past Times” of the Afro-American artist Kerry James Marshall for $21M (ie 800 times its original price) by Sotheby’s last March gave Marshall the title of the “highest paid living Afro-American artist”. It’s not thanks to this particular sale since the artist didn’t get paid at all. Of course he’s doing well and can benefit from this increase of his prices during his lifetime since he’s still living and creating. But the huge gap between the original price and its new one in 20 years, raises again the question of resale rights.

Indeed contemporary artists do not benefit directly of this type of sale because a global regulation that preserves them is still missing (list of countries providing resale rights). In the US or China, leaders on the market, there isn’t any regulation in force that recognizes the Artist’s Resale Right.

Screen Shot 2018-08-08 at 9.52.44 AM.pngFrance was the first country providing for the A.R.R. when, in 1920, “Droit de suite” was introduced. The right’s origins date back to the experience of the family of the French painter Jean-François Millet. After his death in 1875, his painting “L’Angelus” was sold for $150,000 and his destitute family never saw a penny. Still, the royalties are capped and in Europe, Marshall  would have made a bit less than $15,000 according to the current legislation.

Isn’t it fair that auction houses and dealers share some parts of the benefits with artists from whom they profit?

Many people think so and the online platform Feral Horses is among them. Feral Horses aims to democratize the art market by allowing art lovers to co-own contemporary artworks, and by helping contemporary artists to establish themselves and be repaid for their work.  With Feral Horses, artists are given the opportunity to make IPOs of their artwork on the “Primary Market” and once an artwork reaches a sales target set by artists themselves, it has access to the “Secondary Market”, where investors are free to exchange their shares. Artists get a total of 90% from the sale, with a commission of only 10%.

In 2015, the 2014 American Royalties Too Act (ART) failed to pass and a regulation on the subject in the US is not likely to happen soon. The arguments against the artist’s resale right are that it will have a detrimental effect on global art markets, lowering prices, reducing sales volumes and generally making markets less competitive. They also claim it places a heavy burden on art professionals.

As mentioned in the article by Catherine Jewell in the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Magazine, other issues are that “the artist’s resale right, where it exists, is payable to living artists and usually for up to 70 years after their death. It is an “inalienable” right, meaning that it belongs to artists and their heirs and cannot be sold or waived. But are there circumstances under which it makes sense for an artist to be able to transfer the right to a third party, such as an art foundation? Who is responsible for paying the resale royalty – the buyer or the seller? What is an appropriate royalty rate? And what should be the basis for its calculation – the sales price or the auction price?”

These questions and many others will keep art professionals, lobbyists and policymakers busy in the years to come.

Initiative as the ones of Feral Horses certainly contribute in a positive direction. For all artists, an advice I received from art dealer Michael Findlay, director at Aquavella Galleries and former International Director of Fine Arts and a member of Christie’s Board of Directors is “Invest in yourself! Of course if you don’t sell the question is irrelevant but as soon as you do, do not give away all your best work to the dealer even if they pressure you. Keep a few for the future you or your children”.

Willie Bester

Willie Bester,  b 1956, Montagu, Western Cape, South Africa.

This extra-ordinary, visionary African artist has played an essential role in the developing maturity of contemporary South African art. Seen below is a piece from one of his latest collections ‚Social Engineering‘ shown in Johannesburg at Melrose gallery.

mixed media
From ‚Social Engineering‘ series 2017, mixed media

Cuba’s Answer to Disneyland?

José Fuster's art-fueled vision transformed his community—and draws a global crowd to Fusterlandia

According to the international website Tripadvisor, visitors to Havana head first to La Habana Vieja, then to the Malecón, the top two destinations in the site’s “Things to Do in Havana” category.

A little further down the list at #8, just after the nightclub and cultural hub F.A.C.—the Fábrica de Arte Cubano—is the former fishing village of Jaimanitas, at the northwest end of Havana’s Playa district.

Or as most visitors know it, Fusterlandia.

An entrance to “Fusterlandia”. Courtesy FAB Senior Travel
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