Art & Cultural Property


“the quintessential modern commercial chancery set”
Chambers and Partners
"Serle Court is always our first choice of chambers for complex and sophisticated matters"
Chambers HNW

Art & Cultural Property

Serle Court is a leading set delivering a complete service across all the specialist areas called upon in art and cultural property matters.  At both silk and junior level, Serle Court has recognised leaders in this niche area of practice. This enables chambers to offer specialist legal expertise in matters relating to the ownership, sale, attribution, valuation, movement and restitution of art in England and internationally. Whether the issue relates to high net worth clients and trusts or wills and charities or bailments and negligence or intellectual property and copyright, Serle Court has the breadth of experience to assist. 

Members of Serle Court are recommended in Chambers’ UK Bar, Chambers High Net Worth and Legal 500 in the field of ‘Art and Cultural Property’ having been involved in cases such as Thwaytes v. Sotheby’s, the leading recent authority on auctioneers’ negligence which concerned a painting of ‘The Cardsharps’ attributed to Caravaggio and Creative Foundation v. Dreamland, which concerned the removal of a Banksy work. 

Members have also dealt with litigation involving works by artists as diverse as Titian, Modigliani, Warhol, Henry Moore and Winston Churchill and have been involved in claims about wine collections, original music manuscripts and graffiti art. Our barristers regularly represent and advise galleries, museums, dealers and individual artists and designers. Matters include multi-jurisdictional disputes between art galleries involving civil fraud, breach of contract and trade mark infringement.

Andrew Bruce was among the first to be appointed to the panel of arbitrators for the Court of Arbitration for Art (CAfA) based in The Hague in 2019.

Recent cases include:

Adolf Schaller v Ivor Braka (2023): a copyright infringement case involving a piece of appropriation art, and the applicability of the UK and US law thereto.

Hickox v Taylor & Dickinson  (2023): a dispute concerning the fraudulent sale by Timothy Sammons of an impressionist painting, with substantial issues of New York law.

Ashti Fine Art v Art Lending Inc (2023): a dispute concerning a large-scale fraudulent pledge of modern art.

DACS & ACS v Braka (2023): the first case in the UK concerning the enforcement of Artist’s Resale Right.

Thwaytes v. Sotheby’s [2015] EWHC 36 (Ch) in which the Court held that Sotheby’s was not professionally negligent in its research and advice in respect of a painting of ‘The Cardsharps’ in 2006.


News & Events

  • News

    Welcome to SerleShare

    SerleShare is an up-to-date digital marketing initiative that came to life in July 2020 when our Business Development and... Read More

    News

    Andrew Bruce writes for Citywealth magazine

    Andrew Bruce has provided an Art Market Insight to Citywealth magazine which can be read here.  Andrew commented: "... Read More

  • Events

    Art Law Unveiled: Navigating Modern and Contemporary Art Transactions

    Location: Wedlake Bell LLP, 71 Queen Victoria Street, London EC4V 4AY Read More

    Events

    The European Young Bar Association (EYBA): International Weekend

    Location: Mishcon de Reya, Africa House, 70 Kingsway, London, WC2B 6AH Read More


News & Events

  • News

    Welcome to SerleShare

    SerleShare is an up-to-date digital marketing initiative that came to life in July 2020 when our Business Development and... Read More

    News

    Andrew Bruce writes for Citywealth magazine

    Andrew Bruce has provided an Art Market Insight to Citywealth magazine which can be read here.  Andrew commented: "... Read More

  • Events

    Art Law Unveiled: Navigating Modern and Contemporary Art Transactions

    Location: Wedlake Bell LLP, 71 Queen Victoria Street, London EC4V 4AY Read More

    Events

    The European Young Bar Association (EYBA): International Weekend

    Location: Mishcon de Reya, Africa House, 70 Kingsway, London, WC2B 6AH Read More