One and J Gallery v. Christie’s Inc. et al, No. 650005/2019 (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cnty. filed Jan. 02, 2019). One and J Gallery’s motion for a temporary injunction pending arbitration to halt Christie’s sale of an unnamed Francis Bacon painting, worth at least $10 million, has been discontinued. Christie’s acted as the exclusive agent of One and J Gallery, however, One and J Gallery alleged that Christie’s sought to sell the painting in a “commercially unreasonable manner in violation of the U.C.C.” At the time that One and J Gallery entered into this agreement with Christie’s, One and J Gallery received a loan from Christie’s in the amount of $4.9 million. The sale of the Bacon painting was going to pay down the loan. However, One and J Gallery alleged that Christie’s made no attempts to sell the work and later Christie’s sold an additional work provided by One and J Gallery for less than market value, in order to begin repayment of the loan. The litigation has since been discontinued.
De Csepel, et al. v. Republic of Hungary, et al., No. 17-1165 (U.S. Jan. 7, 2019). On January 7, 2019, the Supreme Court of the United States denied the Herzog family’s petition for certiorari. The Herzogs are heirs of Baron Mor Lipot Herzog, a Jewish art collector, whose artwork was stolen during WWII. The heirs have been attempting to reclaim the works from Hungary to no avail. The writ proposed the Supreme Court examine questions of jurisdiction.
Kush et al v. Grande et al., No. 2:2019cv00186 (D. Nev. filed Jan. 31, 2019). Artist Vladimir Kush is suing singer Arianna Grande for copyright infringement for scenes in her music video “God is a Woman.” The case centers around the representation of a woman dancing in the wick of a candle. Kush claims that Grande, her record label, and others involved in the music video, copied his expression of that concept.