Resource: The Law and Arts

I have no idea how I came across it, but I found The Law Portal-Law Primers for the Arts today. As the name implies, the site has links to other sources of information on various laws that apply to the arts. There is also a link to information about how to conduct legal research online.

Some of the topics covered you might expect-free speech, cyberspace law, non-profit law, copyright/fair use, setting up a business, contracts, taxes, visas, etc.

There are some issues covered with which I hadn’t anticipated when I visited the site like those surrounding the use of various materials in the creation of art. The site not only links to articles and laws dealing with this subject but a place to find the Material Safety Data Sheets and OSHA regulations surrounding their use.

Something else I hadn’t expected was an article on what to do if an artist starts performing in your gallery without permission.

The site is a good resource not only for law regarding many of these issues, but also policy discussions on the topics I have mentioned as well as things like network neutrality, privacy and media consolidation.

About Joe Patti

I have been writing Butts in the Seats (BitS) on topics of arts and cultural administration since 2004 (yikes!). Given the ever evolving concerns facing the sector, I have yet to exhaust the available subject matter. In addition to BitS, I am a founding contributor to the ArtsHacker ( website where I focus on topics related to boards, law, governance, policy and practice.

I am also an evangelist for the effort to Build Public Will For Arts and Culture being helmed by Arts Midwest and the Metropolitan Group. (

I am currently the Director of the Grand Opera House in Macon, GA.

Among the things I am most proud are having produced an opera in the Hawaiian language and a dance drama about Hawaii's snow goddess Poli'ahu while working as a Theater Manager in Hawaii. Though there are many more highlights than there is space here to list.


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