New York, 31 January 2014, Art Media Agency (AMA).
The New York City Bar Association has drafted a bill which aims to give scholars greater freedom in speaking out against suspected counterfeits, something which has often lead to severe legal repercussions.
The bill has been co-drafted by Judith Bresler, a lawyer with the firm Withers Worldwide, and Dean Nicyper of Flemming Zulack Williamson Zauderer, and comes after several artists’ foundations shut down their authentication boards for fear of litigation. Following the court case brought against them in 2007 and 2010 by lawyer Seth Redniss, the Andy Warhol Foundation dissolved their authentication board in 2012.
There is hope that the bill will encourage a more open, critical debate on the origins of works – thus avoiding the now five-year silence between Degas scholars concerning the authentication of 73 plaster moulds claimed to be the artist’s own work.
The Bar Association hopes to have the bill signed into law by June, and is currently looking for sponsors in the form of a state senator and a member of the state assembly.