|The First Art Newspaper on the Net
||Established in 1996
|| Wednesday, May 23, 2018
|US judge awards $6.75 mn in damages to graffiti artists|
This file photo taken on November 18, 2013 shows the historic graffiti mecca 5 Pointz seen after being painted over by developers in the Long Island City neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. Andrew Burton / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / AFP.
NEW YORK (AFP).- In a landmark ruling that graffiti art should be protected by US federal law, a New York judge has awarded $6.75 million in damages to 21 artists whose work was whitewashed by a developer in 2013.
In a written decision filed Monday, Judge Frederic Block awarded the maximum possible amount of statutory damages, $150,000 for each of 45 works obliterated at the 5Pointz site in Queens.
For 20 years developer Jerry Wolkoff had invited taggers to showcase their art on his industrial complex, turning it into -- in the words of the artists' lawyer -- the "world's largest outdoor open aerosol museum."
But in 2013 he whitewashed the art before demolishing the site in 2014, making way for a planned $400 million luxury residential complex.
The 21 artists from 5Pointz sued for damages, saying they should have been given the opportunity to salvage their work before the wrecking ball destroyed what had become an internationally acclaimed and thriving tourist attraction.
They went to trial under the Visual Artists Rights Act that says any artwork should be protected, provided it is of recognized stature.
The jury in Brooklyn found last November that the developer broke the law, but their decision was non-binding, leaving Block to make the final ruling. In doing so, he raised from 36 to 45 the number of works of art he deemed of sufficient stature to qualify for damages.
"If not for Wolkoff's insolence, these damages would not have been assessed. If he did not destroy 5Pointz until he received his permits and demolished it 10 months later, the court would not have found that he had acted willfully," the judge wrote.
"The shame of it all is that since 5Pointz was a prominent tourist attraction the public would undoubtedly have thronged to say its goodbyes during those 10 months and gaze at the formidable works of aerosol art for the last time.
"It would have been a wonderful tribute for the artists that they richly deserved," he added.
Eric Baum, lawyer for the artists, welcomed the decision.
"The decision is a clear indication that aerosol art is in the same category as any other fine art, equally worthy of the protection of federal law," he told AFP.
"Their art should be cherished and not destroyed," he added.
Wolkoff's lawyer did not immediately respond to a request to comment.
© Agence France-Presse
February 14, 2018
Exhibition at museum in Oxford reveals the history of settlers in Britain
'Lost' Klimt drawing discovered in Austria
Art Institute of Chicago acquires Duchamp's Bottle Rack
The Giacometti Institute to open in Paris on 20 June 2018
Two early portraits by Freud acquired for the nation and allocated to Abbot Hall, Kendal
Rare Beethoven leaf and Newton's instructions for Philosopher's Stone lead Bonhams NY Books and Manuscripts Auction
Christie's announces highlights from the Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale
North American premiere of Alberto Giacometti exhibition opens in Quebec City
Congressman Sam Johnson donates POW possessions to Smithsonian
Christie's to offer masterpieces by Lucio Fontana, Alberto Burri and Thomas Schütte
US judge awards $6.75 mn in damages to graffiti artists
'Women Look at Women' opens Richard Saltoun's new gallery in Dover Street
Julien's Auctions announces "Hollywood: Property from the Osianama Archives"
Rolls Royce once owned by R2-D2 (actor Kenny Baker of Star Wars fame) for sale with H&H Classics
Exhibition brings together 26 artists from the eastern Baltic Sea region
Exhibition examines the environmental, aesthetic, and technological implications of plastic
Exhibition at Vleeshal brings together three artists with similar interests and different voices
Golden Age crooner Vic Damone dead at 89
Ines Doujak transforms LENTOS Kunstmuseum into a fashion store
Exhibition presents a selection of works exploring the archetypes of good and evil characters
Signed items from Jackie Kennedy, Einstein, Lincoln, many more at University Archives' Feb. 21 auction
Sotheby's acquires Viyet, the online marketplace for interior design
Nelson-Atkins hires Hathaway Maranda to lead Development division
Inscribed first edition of The Great Gatsby may bring $100,000 at Heritage Auctions in New York
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- New Rembrandt found after being bought at London auction
2.- Exhibition at Fotohof focuses on groups in society who are at risk of marginalisation
3.- John Brennan collection of Rock n Roll memorabilia offered at RR Auction
4.- A Bob Dylan guitar fetches $495,000 at auction
5.- Exhibition in San Francisco focuses on the latter half of René Magritte's career
6.- 'Mad' king Ludwig II of Bavaria lost gift to composer Richard Wagner gets rare show
7.- New Royal Academy of Arts opens in celebration of its 250th anniversary
8.- Researchers uncover Anne Frank's 'dirty jokes'in her diary
9.- New York art sales near $3 billion in two weeks as uber-rich hunt trophies
10.- Berlin's Ethnological Museum returns grave-plundered artefacts to Alaska
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.