Sérgio Muñoz Sarmiento Esq:
Visual Artists Rights Act
Alternative Manifestations and Productive Failures
Wednesday 13 June, 2012
6:30pm, $10 suggested
Center for Book Arts
28 West 27th Street, Floor 3
Mass MoCA vs Christoph Buchel
Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento is an artist who practices art law. He is interested in the relationship between contemporary art and law, with a primary focus on copyright, moral rights, free speech, deaccessioning, and nonprofit arts organizations.
He received his BA in Art from the University of Texas-El Paso and an MFA in Art from the California Institute of the Arts. He was a Van Lier Fellow at the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Program in Studio Art in 1997-98, and received his J.D. from Cornell Law School in 2006.
He is currently the Associate Director for Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts in New York City, where he advises and represents visual and performing artists and arts organizations. In 2010, Sarmiento founded the VLA Art & Law Residency Program, the first residency of its kind, as well as the Law School for Visual Artists. His legal experience includes advising artists, galleries, and arts organizations on matters involving copyright, trademarks, moral rights, free speech, and artist-gallery disputes. He has recently worked on an important appeal under the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 on behalf of the Swiss installation artist Christoph Büchel in the artist’s highly-publicized dispute with the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. He has also co-written amicus briefs for the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court regarding another high-profile moral rights case, Chapman Kelley vs. Chicago Park District, in support of artist Chapman Kelley.
Sarmiento has taught in a number of universities and art schools, including NYU, Harvard University, the University of Southern California, University of California-Irvine, Occidental College, CalArts, Hofstra University, and Brooklyn Law School. He was a mentor with the Kennedy Center’s Arts in Crisis program in 2009-2010.
His art projects have been shown in international exhibitions, including Mexico, Germany, and Spain, and nationally in Dallas, New York City, and Los Angeles. He has published essays and projects in Five Continents and One City Exhibition (catalogue essay, Mexico), Capital Art: On the Culture of Punishment (catalogue essay, US), Cabinet Magazine (US), Law Text Culture (Australia), and Unbound: Harvard Journal of the Legal Left. For more information on his art projects, please see Clancco’s Projects page.
Sarmiento teaches art law at Fordham Law School, and serves as a New York State Council on the Arts panelist for state and local partnerships. He is also a member of the Art Law Committee of the New York City Bar Association, and serves on the advisory board for two nonprofits, The Nietzsche Circle and The Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance.