Art and Cultural Heritage Law: A Practical Guide

Art and Cultural Heritage Law: A Practical Guide

The first book to address the Art and Cultural Heritage Law in Ireland 



Author: Martin Bradley  |  ISBN: 9781911611998  |  Format: Paperback | Extent: Approx 250 pages |  Price: € | Publishing: Autumn 2024


Art and cultural heritage law is a well-established practice area internationally but still in its infancy in Ireland. With the passing of the Historic and Archaeological Heritage and Miscellaneous Provisions Act 2023, Ireland is poised to accede to the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention on Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural Objects and to ratify the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property. There is increasing scrutiny of the provenance of 19th century collections in Irish institutions, in particular ethnographic items. New pressures are being applied to galleries, libraries, archives and museums (‘GLAM’) to fully catalogue their extensive holdings to prevent loss while also being expected to digitise and open access to their material, while ensuring compliance with copyright, GDPR and artists moral rights.

GLAM bodies must also interact with contract law, deposit, loan and gift agreements, tax law and customs and import and export restrictions, while often operating without in-house counsel.

Art and Cultural Heritage Law: A Practical Guide takes a pragmatic approach to explaining legal issues to GLAM professionals, and art and cultural heritage issues to legal practitioners.

Content Includes 


  • Understanding the Legal framework
  • Common, Civil, European and International Law
  • A brief history of Art & Cultural Heritage Law in Ireland
  • The Historic and Archaeological Heritage and Miscellaneous     Provisions Act 2023

Chapter 1 Copyright and Moral Rights

  • What is Copyright?
  • Copyright Duration
  • Copyright Exceptions
  • Moral Rights
  • Digitisation and Copyright
  • Digital Lending

Chapter 2 Data Protection, Freedom of Information and Open Data

  • GDPR
  • DSARs
  • Freedom of Information
  • The Open Data Directive
  • Responsibilities
  • Exceptions

Chapter 3 Title

  • Title and Provenance
  • Deposits, Gifts and Loans
  • Civil Recovery of Foreign Objects
  • Limitation Periods
  • The UNESCO 1970 Convention
  • The UNIDROIT 1995 Convention

Chapter 4 Art Crime and Acquisitions

  • Art Crime and Money Laundering
  • Heritage Crime and Sentencing
  • Import and Export Restrictions
  • Ethics of Acquisition

Chapter 5 Restitution, Repatriation and Deaccession

  • Ethical and Legal Considerations of Deaccession
  • Sale and Disposal
  • Restitution and Repatriation
  • Human Remains and Ethnological Items
  • Nazi Era Spoliation

Chapter 6 Contracts

  • Introduction to Contract Law
  • Types of Contracts
  • Deposits, Loan and Gift Agreements
  • Digitisation and Cataloguing Agreements
  • Auctions
  • Authenticity

Chapter 7 Archaeology and Treasure

  • Sites and National Monuments
  • Underwater Sites
  • Listed Buildings and their Contents
  • Metal Detecting
  • Treasure
  • Statutory Reporting
  • Licensing

Chapter 8 Tax

  • Tax and Acquisitions
  • Tax and Acceptance in Lieu
  • Taxes Consolidation Act 1997, Section 1003
  • NFTs

Chapter 9 Exports and Loans

  • Exports and Export Restrictions
  • Export Licenses and Customs
  • International Loans
  • Brexit
  • Immunity from Seizure

Who Should Buy This Book?

Art and Cultural Heritage Law: A Practical Guide is written with the intention of giving legal guidance to professionals who operate in the galleries, libraries, archives and the museums sector. This is the first publication in Ireland to address the multitude of legal issues that GLAM professionals encounter. This book will also be of great interest to legal professionals working and advising clients in this sector, as well as insurers, auctioneers, gallerists, artists, students, academics and anyone with an interest in the law of art and cultural heritage in Ireland.

About the Author

Martin Bradley is a Barrister-at-Law and a qualified archivist with over 25 years’ experience working in the art and cultural heritage sector.  Martin also holds a Diploma in Art Profession Law and Ethics (DipAPLE) from the Institute of Art & Law.



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