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Panel 4/29: Who Owns This Image?: Art, Access, and the Public Domain after Bridgeman v. Corel

Cameron Parkins, April 18th, 2008

On Tuesday, April 29, Creative Commons, the Art Law Committee of the New York City Bar Association, the College Art Association, and ARTstor are cosponsoring “Who Owns This Image?: Art, Access, and the Public Domain after Bridgeman v. Corel”, a public panel discussion on the issues surrounding the reproduction of public domain works.

Virginia Rutledge, CC’s Vice President and General Counsel, will be moderating the panel, which aims to better understand the legal ramifications and cultural repercussions of Bridgeman Art Library Ltd. v. Corel Corp. (S.D.N.Y. 1999). Joining Virginia will be a group of seriously credentialed panelists (see list below) for what is bound to be a vibrant and illuminating discussion that touches on issues of “art, publishing, and the law.”

This will all be taking place on Tuesday, April 29, 6:30 – 8:00 pm at The Great Hall, New York City Bar Association, 42 W. 44th Street, New York City (Google Map). The program is free and open to the public and no reservation is required. With this said, seating is limited and a panel of such caliber will undoubtedly fill up quickly so be sure to arrive early! See all the details after the jump:

Who Owns This Image?
Art, Access, and the Public Domain after Bridgeman v. Corel

A Public Panel Discussion

Cosponsored by:
Art Law Committee, New York City Bar Association
College Art Association
ARTstor
Creative Commons

Panelists:
Dr. Theodore Feder, President, Art Resource, Artists Rights Society
Christopher Lyon, Executive Editor, Prestel Publishing
William Patry, Senior Copyright Counsel, Google
Hon. Richard A. Posner, United States Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit
Maureen Whalen, Associate General Counsel, J. Paul Getty Trust

Moderator:
Virginia Rutledge, Chair, Art Law Committee, New York City Bar Association; Vice President and General Counsel, Creative Commons

Who owns the Mona Lisa? In Bridgeman Art Library Ltd. v. Corel Corp.(S.D.N.Y. 1999), Judge Lewis A. Kaplan ruled that exact photographic copies of two-dimensional public domain works of art are not
copyrightable under U.S. law, because such images are not original. Yet nearly a decade after that decision, copyright in many such images continues to be asserted.

This program addresses questions currently debated across the worlds of art, publishing, and the law:

Should access to public domain artworks control uses of images of those works? When and how should custodians of public domain artworks exercise control over reproductions of them? How does contract
intersect with copyright in the control of image uses? Does the image permissions hurdle play a role in the decline of art publishing, or are the complaints of critics overwrought? What is the nature of the
public domain with respect to works of art?

3 Responses to “Panel 4/29: Who Owns This Image?: Art, Access, and the Public Domain after Bridgeman v. Corel”

  1. Improbulus says:

    This looks like it’ll be excellent. Will the session be webcast (live or after the event) or podcast, please?

  2. Virginia Rutledge says:

    Unfortunately, this event will not be “cast” or recorded, but we do hope the conversation will continue on various blogs and in print.

  3. Terry Martin says:

    Both the Art Law Blog and Rebecca Tusnet have reported on this event.

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