Saturday, December 07, 2013

"If the defendants are found liable, some legal experts say, it could have broad implications for the art world by threatening to turn such confidentiality agreements into restrictions or even prohibitions of resales."

The Wall Street Journal has an update on Marguerite Hoffman's strange, "self-defeating" lawsuit for breach of a confidentiality provision in an agreement for a Rothko she sold.  The trial starts in Dallas next week.

The agreement provided that the parties would makes "maximum effort to keep all aspects of this transaction confidential," and the claim is that the buyer breached that promise, not by talking about the transaction to anyone, but instead by selling the work at auction, where, although "the Sotheby's catalog and website didn't name Mrs. Hoffman as a prior owner," the "publicity surrounding the auction ... outed her as a previous seller."