Petra Warrington discusses the UK’s export control system in relation to artworks in the IBA

  • October 09, 2017
  • By Hunters Law

Export control of artworks in the UK: how a portrait of a Florentine youth has stirred emotion and prompted calls for reform 

Petra discusses issues surrounding the sale of a portrait by Pontormo to an American collector who planned to take the painting out of the UK. The artwork was subject to a temporary export licence deferral and the applicant declined a matching offer from the National Gallery. The recent case, which prompted criticism of the UK’s export control system, is discussed in the context of recurring issues such as the calculation of fair market price, the problem of insufficient institutional resources and whether an owner’s commitment to sell an artwork once a matching offer price has been accepted should be contractually binding.

For further information about export licensing in relation to artworks, please contact Petra Warrington or a member of the Art and Cultural Property team.

The article was originally published for members of the Art, Cultural Institutions and Heritage Law Committee of the International Bar Association, and can be accessed here behind a paywall.

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