What do you get when you buy some art?
March 24, 2008 2:17 PM Subscribe
If I buy an original piece of artwork, from the artist, without a written contract, who owns the copyright?
posted by nomisxid to Law & Government (13 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I often purchase small pieces of original artwork at craft fairs and the like. Generally these sales are done without any paperwork of any kind, sometimes not even a simple receipt.
I'm curious about the implicit copyright transfers that may or may not occur under...
a) sale of a mechanical reproduction of an original --ie a print
b) sale of a in-the-style-of-a-previous-work reproduction of an original --ie a smaller version of a larger work, but produced by the artist by hand
c) sale of the 'original' expression of an artistic vision --ie a working sketch/notes that are latter used as basis for a painting
d) sale of the 'final' expression of the artistic vision --ie the painting the artist offers for sale as 'an original'
I'm most curious about c & d style sales, if they restrict the artist's ability to make further works on the same theme, and who owns the right to produce prints from the originals, both during the artist's lifetime, and afterwords.