Philip’s legal expertise is reassuringly evident. He immerses himself in the case before him and is also approachable and commercial in his advice and thinking."

- Chambers & Partners

Art & Antiquities

Philip’s legal expertise is reassuringly evident. He immerses himself in the case before him and is also approachable and commercial in his advice and thinking."

- Chambers & Partners

Art & Antiquities

Philip’s experience includes disputes concerning jurisdiction and the law applicable to the acquisition and passing of proprietary and security interests that In English law involves the application of the lex situs rule – the law of the place where the work in question was when the alleged title or security interest was acquired or created. Some legal systems recognise and uphold title and security interests acquired for value and in good faith to stolen or fraudulently acquired art. See some of Philip’s cases below for more details.

Satfinance Investments Limited v Athena Art Finance Corp [2020] EWHC 3527 (Ch) 21 Dec 2020. Represented American art finance company in successful challenge to the attempted exercise of jurisdiction by a BVI company claiming to have an interest in a large Jean-Michel Basquiat painting entitled “Humidity” which had been pledged as loan collateral by art dealer, Inigo Philbrick, who is alleged to have committed multiple frauds and then fled to the South Pacific Island of Vanuatu. Decision affirmed on appeal.

Whether states are entitled to claim title to objects said to be part of cultural heritage Islamic Republic of Iran v Barakat Gallery [2007] EWCA Civ 1374. That case concerned the question of the ownership of a collection of antiquities dating from the period 3000 BC to 2000 BC that originated in Jiroft Iran that were allegedly illicitly exported and was ultimately resolved in the Court of Appeal.

Ownership of arguably the most valuable treasure ever discovered on the wreck of the Spanish treasure ship San Jose a 62-gun flagship galleon of a Spanish fleet carrying gold, silver and emeralds from the mines of Peru back to Spain. It was sunk on 8 June 1708 in a battle with the British off of Cartagena, Colombia This was found in Colombian waters by the Ocean Infinity Corporation giving rise to claims by a number of South American states and other claimants.

A 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, considered one of the most desirable cars ever built and sold for a record $44m is the subject of an appeal to the Court of Appeal that was featured by The Lawyer as one of the top 15 appeals of 2021 on 3 March 2021.

 

Case specialisms

  • Classic cars
  • Duress and undue influence
  • Antiquities and cultural heritage
  • Art forcibly appropriated by the Nazis
  • Treasure both on land and submerged
  • Provenance of and title to works of art and high value objects

Very knowledgable and robust advocate. He has the ear of the court."

- Chambers & Partners

Relevant Cases

Fisken v Carl SC-2020-APP-000829

Philip Shepherd QC acted for Mr Bernard Carl (“BC”) on his successful application to set aside a Default Costs Certificate

Read more Read the judgment

Gregor Fisken Limited v Bernard Carl 2021

A 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, considered one of the most desirable cars ever built and sold for a record $44m is the subject of an appeal to the Court of Appeal that was featured by The Lawyer as one of the top 15 appeals of 2021 on 3 March 2021.

Read more

Satfinance Investments Limited v Athena Art Finance Corp 2020

Litigation concerning the fraud allegedly committed by modern art dealer Inigo Philbrick relating to Jean-Michel Basquiat painting entitled “Humidity”.

Case link

Treasure of the San Jose 2018

Dispute over the ownership of arguably the most valuable treasure ever discovered on the wreck of the Spanish treasure ship, San Jose. The wreck was found in Colombian waters by the Ocean Infinity Corporation giving rise to claims by a number of Governments and other claimants.

Read more

Islamic Republic of Iran v Barakat Gallery 2007

This case concerned the question of the ownership of a collection of antiquities dating from the period 3000 BC to 2000 BC that originated in Jiroft Iran that were allegedly illicitly exported and was ultimately resolved in the Court of Appeal.

Case link