"Artists and arts organizations make valuable contributions to our communities and strengthen our quality of life. Just as our copyright laws extend to musicians and authors to encourage their artistic creativity, they should also apply to our visual artists," said Senator Baldwin, who serves on the
"Our visual artists are critical cultural contributors, and the ART Act ensures they are fairly compensated for their work," said Senator Markey. "Their creativity is a currency that should be properly valued. The ART Act also brings
"American artists are being treated unfairly," said Congressman Nadler (D-NY), who first introduced a version of the ART Act in 2011 and serves as the Ranking Democrat on the Courts, Intellectual Property, and Internet Subcommittee of the
"Visual artists are the only members of the creative community in
Under current copyright law, visual artists - painters, sculptors, and photographers - are denied the ability to fully benefit from the success of their work over time. Unlike recording artists or publishers who, if successful, sell thousands of copies of their work and recoup a royalty from each purchase, artists sell their work only once. If they are successful, the price of their work increases but they recoup nothing if their original work is resold at a much higher price. The benefits derived from the appreciation in the price of a visual artists' work typically accrues to collectors, auction houses, and galleries, not to the artist. In addition,
The ART Act would:
Provide a competitive resale royalty of five percent of the sales price (up to
The resale royalty applies to any auction where the entity conducting the auction has sold at least
Royalties are collected by visual artists' copyright collecting societies who must distribute the royalties to the artists or their heirs at least four times per year.
Allows U.S. artists to collect resale royalties when their works are sold at auction in the E.U. and more than 70 other countries.
The ART Act requires further study by the Copyright Office after five years to determine the effects of the resale royalty on the art market and whether it should be expanded to cover works sold by dealers and other art market professionals.
The ART Act includes many recommendations from the United States Copyright Office's December 2013 report entitled, Resale Royalties: An Updated Analysis.
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