Artist Rights was created to address questions that artists may have about their rights under the First Amendment. The site is a collaboration between the National Coalition Against Censorship and the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT).

Artist Rights was inspired by an artist who received a letter demanding that their work, which included nudes, be removed from an exhibition in a public space. The letter contained confusing and intimidating legal language; had the artist been able to penetrate the jargon, he might have realized that the assertions in the letter were incorrect and that he was well within his rights. 

Artist Rights answers questions artists may have about their rights, and includes a glossary of legal terms and examples of case law involving different forms of censorship with clear explanations for non-lawyers.

The site includes a form for questions and comments so that artists can contact NCAC directly about potential controversies or issues they may already face.

The Artist Rights site is intended as a quick reference tool and not as a stand-in for legal advice.

Artist Rights brings together NCAC’s art law database and CDT’s artists’ online rights site.


Background image:
Adolphe William Bouguereau, French (1825–1905)
Orestes Pursued by the Furies, 1862
91 x 109 5/8 in. (231.1 x 278.4 cm)
Oil on canvas
Gift of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.
Chrysler Museum of Art 71.623