Law and Art

Iberian Lawyer has spoken to Laura Sánchez Gaona, a lawyer specialising in art law and founder of Caliope Art Law, the international art law boutique based in Madrid, which has recently announced its strategic alliance with De Castro Estudio de Abogados, a law firm specialising in complex litigation.

You are a specialist in the art market and cultural heritage, how did you get there, was it a vocation?
Absolutely. When I was still a law student, I started in the cultural sector doing legal research on Spanish and Italian cultural heritage at the Royal Academy of History (Madrid). After that, I studied a Master’s degree focused on the art market, which I combined with another period of research at the Museo de América (Madrid) on the export and import regime of cultural goods in Latin American countries. In the field of law, before choosing this sector as my speciality, I explored specialised law firms in countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom and Switzerland, where the practice had been consolidated for decades, in order to study how to implement it in the Spanish scenario, where it was and is undoubtedly fundamental.

What made you found CALIOPE, a unique art law boutique in our country?
Mainly, the aim was to be able to offer tailormade services in a complex, heterogeneous sector in which the international level cannot be ignored, due to the dynamics of the art market and the movement of cultural goods. After the international exploration I mentioned before, and my time as an art lawyer in one of the big Spanish business firms, I came to the conclusion that the key to good advice in this sector is, of course, to know in depth the law and the cultural fabric of the country in which I practice as a lawyer, but to have the transversal capacity to be able to offer, as a consultant, the best strategies in case the cultural goods are or may be linked to more jurisdictions.


Michael Heron