AArt crime: the challenges of provenance, law and ethics

Oliveri, Vicki, Porter, Glenn, Davies, Chris, and James, Pamela (2022) AArt crime: the challenges of provenance, law and ethics. Museum Management and Curatorship, 37 (2). pp. 179-195.

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Authenticating artworks can be difficult in the absence of reliable records. Record artwork prices at auction and sales through galleries incentivises criminal practices by exploiting vulnerabilities intrinsic within the process of provenance records. Consequently, falsifying provenance documents is a common method for legitimising and enabling the sale of stolen or forged art. In this context, and utilising Cohen and Felson’s crime triangle concept, an absence of capable guardianship arguably occurs when provenance research is inadequate, facilitating criminal activity. The ability to authenticate an artwork provides a key art crime prevention strategy to constrain illegitimate art from entering legitimate art collections. Using a case study research method, this paper investigates the contemporary conditions in which provenance research is performed. Future directions of provenance research practices are also discussed, including the increased use of databases and the emerging role of blockchain technology.

Item ID: 73302
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-9185
Keywords: Provenance issues, provenance research, acquisition ethics, art crime, crime prevention
Copyright Information: © 2022 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2022 07:30
FoR Codes: 48 LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES > 4804 Law in context > 480401 Criminal law @ 35%
36 CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING > 3606 Visual arts > 360699 Visual arts not elsewhere classified @ 35%
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4402 Criminology > 440214 Sociological studies of crime @ 30%
SEO Codes: 23 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 2304 Justice and the law > 230403 Criminal justice @ 50%
13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1301 Arts > 130103 The creative arts @ 50%
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