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February 13, 2019

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Fine Art and Tax Law

February 13, 2019


Incase you didn't know-


TSB-A-91 (47)S Sales Tax




The issue raised by Petitioner, The Association of Professional Art Advisors, is whether art advisory services and ancillary support services rendered by professional art advisors/consultants are subject to the tax imposed under the provisions of Section 1105(c)(7) of the Tax Law.


A professional art advisor is a person who is qualified by education and experience to provide professional guidance to the collector on the purchase, installation, placement and maintenance of works of art.


The professional experience and educational background of a professional art advisor normally includes a thorough knowledge of art history, on the job experience with a museum, gallery or other arts organization that teaches correct curatorial skills and art handling procedures, and knowledge of the art market. The following hypotheticals represent the various services which a professional art advisor may provide:


A. An art advisor is retained to advise a firm on the purchase of important contemporary paintings on canvas, unique paintings on paper, original signed, limited edition prints, and photographs. Most of the artists and photographers whose works are acquired are well known in the art world, and many are represented in museum collections. The primary purpose of these services is to advise the client on the acquisition of an art collection with investment potential, one which will distinguish the client for its commitment to a quality art acquisition program, enhance its prestige and promote greater understanding of art and its enjoyment for employees, visitors and clients. For these services the client pays a percentage of the art acquisition budget.


B. For the firm described in paragraph A, the art advisor also provides curatorial services. Curatorial services include photographing and cataloging the collection, periodically reassessing the value of the collection for insurance purposes, arranging for signage and labels for the artworks, selecting framers who are attentive to archival techniques, and arranging for conservators for restoration of the collection when necessary. Curatorial services are billed at a per diem rate.


C. In connection with the relocation of a client's business, the art advisor provides the foll