The auction house pointed out that such a move would be a stimulus for the market and would "help collectors sell their work in France" rather than in New York, where no such royalty is applied. In Britain, the choice is left to the company in charge of the sale.
Although many arts business professionals were concerned about the resale right harming business and driving auctions to be held in Geneva or New York the UK art market has continued to excel with buyers reacting positively to giving a percentage back to the artist. As maintained by Joanna Cave, chief executive of the UK’s Design and Copyright Society, droit de suite not only rewards artists financially, but also “serves to remind art market professionals, buyers and sellers, who created the art in the first place.”
Many people profit when an artwork is resold, but not the artist.
The Artist’s Resale Right would allow visual artists to receive 5% when their work is resold – just as they do in at least 93 other countries.
The full value of an artwork often isn’t seen on the first sale. It is common for visual art to increase in value over time, as the reputation of the artist grows.
For example, Inuit artist, Kenojuak Ashevak, sold her piece Enchanted Owl in 1960 for $24. It was later resold for $58,650. Ashevak got nothing from the resale.
In Canada and Abroad
Once established in Canada, artists would be able to benefit from secondary sales of their work in Canada, as well as from reciprocal arrangements with other countries where the ARR exists. At least 93 countries world-wide have legislated the ARR, including the entire European Union and Australia.
The Canadian art market is growing, and visual artists are losing out on the profits being made on their work in the secondary market. Half of visual artists in Canada earn less than $18,000 per year. Recent research shows that senior visual artists (over 65) have median arts earnings of about $5,000, which is the lowest of any artistic discipline, and that 32% of elder artists are at a high financial risk.
Help Bring the Artist’s Resale Right to Canada
CARFAC and RAAV are relaunching the campaign to bring the Artist’s Resale Right to Canada. The new government has been vocal about their support for the arts and we are hopeful they will see the importance of this initiative.
You can help!
Members of Parliament are highly motivated by what their constituents want. Sending an email to your MP helps to raise awareness on Parliament Hill and show public support. It only takes a minute. Just Click the button below for an easy website form from CARFAC.
More information on the French Decision More information from the Legal Side