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Academic Program

The program comprises the following modules:

I. The Artwork and its Protection

Module I introduces students to the art sector, providing a historical introduction to the art market and to the main legal aspects related to the sector. Module I tackles also rules governing intellectual property rights, from copyright protection to norms concerning artist’s rights, authenticity and re-productions of a work of art. The last part of this module is aimed at presenting the main players operating in the art market.

II. The Circulation of Artworks

Module II is dedicated to the legal concerns related to the circulation of artworks. The module takes into consideration different ways of circulation of artistic assets, from purchase to donations, with a specific focus on private sales and auction houses. It will also provide an overview on the new forms of art resulting from recent technologies and involving the new digital market.

III. Art Trade and the Commercial Exploitation of Artworks

Module III is dedicated to the trade of cultural goods, with a specific focus on the illegal trade and its legal consequences. The problem of the illegal trade will be analyzed more in detail. In addition, students will become familiar with anti-money laundering rules and taxation problems.

IV. Exhibition and Collecting

Module IV provides an all-encompassing overview of the legal issues related to collecting artworks and organizing art exhibitions. Particular attention will be paid to key aspects such as the regulation of the relationships between artists, collectors and museums, artwork loan agreements as well as problems concerning the transportation of artworks and the insurance policies applicable to the variety of actors involved. In addition, students will focus on the legal regime governing foundations and private museums, also through the analysis of the applicable organizational models which have proven to be the most successful ones.

V. Circulation and Protection of Artworks in International Law

Module V tackles the rules governing circulation and protection of artworks at the international level, which reflect the exponential growth the global art market has eventually experienced in the last decades along with the increasing international concern in ensuring the protection and preservation of cultural heritage. Students will therefore deepen their understanding of the various systems of protection of artworks set forth in international treaties and conventions (many of which adopted under the auspices of the UNESCO), dwelling both on the regimes applicable in time of peace and in wartime.

VI. Circulation and Protection of Artworks in European Law

Module VI addresses more in detail the supranational rules concerning the circulation and protection of cultural property from a European standpoint, providing an insight into EU policies aimed at preserving, protecting and safeguarding cultural heritage. Emphasis will be placed on the European regulatory framework governing import-export of artworks, public procurement in cultural heritage and obligations of the parties involved in cultural property sales. In addition, students will work on case studies and practical examples which allow them to critically observe the implementation of the legal regimes covered in the first part of module VI. 

VII. Dispute and Settlement Systems

Module VII analyses the civil and penal dispute issues pertaining to market of art work. In addition, lectures of this last module will dwell on the means available, besides litigation, for settling disputes which may arise in the art sector. Particular attention will therefore be devoted to arbitration and other systems of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), forum shopping and preferred jurisdiction arising from European and international case law.