Resale Royalty Right for Visual Artists

December 11, 2018

Over $1 million in resale royalty revenue was generated in the financial year of 2017-18, with more than 180 artists receiving their first eligible resale payment in that time.

Artists from all stages of their careers are benefitting from the resale right, which entitles them or their estate to a 5% share of the sales price when their eligible works are resold in the secondary art market.

To be eligible the work’s sale price must be $1000 (incl. GST) or more, the artist’s work must still be in copyright (which applies for 70 years from the end of the year of death), the artist must be an Australian citizen or resident and the person selling the work must have acquired it after the start of the resale royalty scheme on June 9, 2010.

Copyright Agency Manager of Visual Arts and facilitator of the resale royalty scheme, Judy Grady says, “At its core, the resale royalty right is about allowing the artists who created the work to share in its value when it is resold.”  Judy also noted that, “Artists often share with us how important these royalties are to them as a source of income that supports their art practice.”

Since its 2010 introduction, the resale royalty scheme has generated over $6m in royalties, for more than 1600 artists and estates. It has also had a strong impact in remote and regional areas with 38% of the artists receiving royalties residing in the Northern Territory and 18% in South Australia and Western Australian – mostly in the central desert region.

Other feedback we’ve heard from artists includes: “Copyright and resale royalty payments appear in my account periodically, often during periods where there have been no primary sales and are very welcome.”

“We can benefit from the resale of our work and have a better understanding of how our artworks are moving in the market place.”

“The resale right is important to me as I feel it is a form of respect for the artist”

For more information about resale royalty scheme or your rights and responsibilities as an artist or art market professional, visit The Australian Government has appointed Copyright Agency Limited as the collecting society for the Resale Royalty Rights for Visual Artists scheme.

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