CUHK LAW has organised the 5th Year Greater China Legal History Seminar Series in 2019-20 which aims to serve as a forum to discuss the historical development of a great variety of legal issues of interest in the Greater China region. On 3 April 2020, the seminar series featured an online seminar “Collectors and Collections of Chinese Art and Antiquities: Problems with Gifts, Trusts and Legacies” delivered by Prof. Steven Gallagher of CUHK LAW, attracting record-breaking 1,081 registrations from all over the world!
In his seminar, Prof. Gallagher discussed the issues in forming, maintaining and disposing of collections, in particular of Chinese art and antiquities. The main focus was on issues involving title, authenticity and provenance in the acquisition and disposal of a collection of art and antiquities. This included problems with looted and stolen items and restrictions on the trade in art and antiquities including endangered species, for example ivory, and even human remains. Prof. Gallagher concluded by considering the problems of disposing of collections – whether by selling, destroying or donating. He also responded to online questions from the participants in the Q&A session.