5 contracts that every gallery owner should know

    Here are the contracts that every gallery owner should use in his daily practices

    Whether you are organizing a new exhibition, representing a new artist or lending a work for an exhibition, it is essential to have contracts aimed at regulating your daily operations in the gallery.

    Here are 5 contracts that every gallery owner should know and use!


    Specifies the works that the gallery takes over from the artist and is generally made up of a list of works with details such as price and technical details of the work and accompanied by a series of conditions

    Why is it important

    If you have received works for delivery from one or more artists, it is necessary to have a document stating when they were delivered and which ones you received, the technical specifications, the conditions. The Consignment Agreement identifies the obligations of the gallery owner who receives the works, how long he will have their custody and answers questions such as:

    • Why did you receive the works?
    • How long can the gallery owner keep them?
    • Is it allowed to move the works to another space without informing the artist?
    • In the case of a sale, does it refer to a sales account contract with the artist?


    The loan agreement is a fundamental document for the transport of works of art, especially for the loan operation.

    Why is it important

    The contract contains all the loan specifications such as: duration, mode of transport, insurance policy, storage and installation details, use of images and legal aspects.


    This type of agreement governs the terms and conditions regarding the professional relationship between artist and gallery owner.

    Why is it important

    This document provides the gallery owner and the artist with clarity regarding mutual rights and obligations. Topics to be included in this document are:

    • Type of relationship and representation;
    • Economic matters (relating to payments, prices, commissions and refunds);
    • Expenses (types of expenses and who covers them).


    This document governs the terms and conditions that legitimize the working relationship between gallery owner and collaborators.

    Why is it important

    This document will help clarify the rights and obligations of the gallery owner as an employer, of employees and external collaborators. First of all, the document identifies the type of contract, job position, legal obligations, salary, the beginning and end of the validity of the contract.


    The purpose for which these contracts are used is to bind one or both parties to the agreement to keep certain information secret that must be kept “confidential”.

    Why is it important

    The agreement relates to the information that the parties exchange with respect to which it is necessary to comply with the following obligations:

    • keep information;
    • not to use them for purposes unrelated to negotiations or the execution of the contract;
    • not disclose them to third parties or to persons who are not mentioned in the contract;
    • to forget such information once the effects of the contract have ceased.

    Given the changing landscape of relationships between artist and gallery owner, it is important to work with appropriate contracts made by lawyers who are experts in the field of art law.

    The Art Concierge of Art Rights is the largest community of professionals in support of art. Among these it is possible to find experts capable of offering advice in art and tax law to protect artists, collectors and operators in the sector.


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