The Art Law Blog: Court of Appeals Affirms Wildenstein Dismissal

Landscape with Three Trees 1892

“Landscape with Three Trees” (1892) by Paul Gauguin via oceansbridge.com

The New York Court of Appeals has unanimously affirmed the dismissal of a lawsuit against Guy Wildenstein arising out of the purchase of a Gauguin painting. The decision is here [warning: pdf] …

At the intermediate appellate level, one judge thought the unjust enrichment claim should have survived because, on such a claim, “there is no requirement that the aggrieved party be in privity with the party enriched at his or her expense.” But the Court of Appeals held that, although it is true that “privity is not required for an unjust enrichment claim,” such a claim will nevertheless fail “if the connection between the parties is too attenuated.”

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