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Taking very large paintings on a flight

Taking very large paintings on a flight

Old Feb 9, 20, 9:12 pm
  #16  
 
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Seigex it is really complicated -- while there may not be import duty there may be VAT/GST -- and it is so important that a work be classified properly.

One of the most unusual cases with art and VAT was a problem a gallery had importing a sculpture by the late artist Dan Flavin -- the artist used long florescent light tubes and the art works were classified as light fixtures -- with a higher VAT. UK Customs did not believe it was art and the gallery had to file an appeal.

I stick to drawings, much easier to transport, but have used customs brokers who have been worth the fee.

I know that paintings are shipped via air cargo for museum exhibitions but there is a customs broker involved.

I hope your wife has a successful exhibition and congratulations to her.
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Old Feb 9, 20, 9:32 pm
  #17  
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arttravel I thought as a Canadian, she could bring paintings into Canada that she made (whether in the US or Canada). No one in customs has given her a problem with that. Same in the US. But honestly, we've been naive.

With respect to the UK, she brought three pieces over as part of a group show in a tube that she too home with her.. Later, she brought in the paintings for a one-person again in a tube. Maybe two. I think she went in the line that said "Nothing to Declare" because we had been told that there was no duty on original artwork. We knew there would be VAT and maybe other taxes when the gallery sold pieces. That we are sure we handled correctly. But we didn't think she needed to declare the paintings on the way in. Some are still unsold.
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Old Feb 9, 20, 10:37 pm
  #18  
 
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I’ve never had anything to do with shipping art, but I do semi-regularly ship scientific lab equipment for remote experiments. It is kind of similar to art in that it is unique, irreplaceable, sensitive to shipping conditions, and usually tax-free. My team has had consistently satisfactory results from Fedex “special services”. They essentially have worked with us to ensure that the special shipping requirements of our equipment are met, and also handled the legal issues if any. I’m sure UPS and DHL have similar capability.

Best of luck,

saunders111
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Old Feb 9, 20, 11:27 pm
  #19  
 
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Originally Posted by shawbridge View Post
arttravel I thought as a Canadian, she could bring paintings into Canada that she made (whether in the US or Canada). No one in customs has given her a problem with that. Same in the US. But honestly, we've been naive.

With respect to the UK, she brought three pieces over as part of a group show in a tube that she too home with her.. Later, she brought in the paintings for a one-person again in a tube. Maybe two. I think she went in the line that said "Nothing to Declare" because we had been told that there was no duty on original artwork. We knew there would be VAT and maybe other taxes when the gallery sold pieces. That we are sure we handled correctly. But we didn't think she needed to declare the paintings on the way in. Some are still unsold.
I think technically there should have been a bond for the VAT for non EU work brought into UK (pre Brexit). I have bought at auctions in the UK and there is always a special notification — but I am not an expert in such things.

https://www.artatlaw.com/archives/ar...ng-antiques-uk

Both of these links describe the Temporary Import procedure when art from outside EU is taken into EU (again all pre Brexit).

There is a difference between customs duty and VAT issues.
Most galleries should know about such issues. When I have sent art to the EU for sale it always has a Temporary Import admission so to only pay VAT if the work is sold and I had a customs broker do the paperwork even if I carried the art. Most TAs I have dealt with are initially for one year but can be renewed.
The last thing I want is customs problems as I travel and often buy — rarely sell.
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Old Feb 11, 20, 10:39 pm
  #20  
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@arttravel, I get the following message from [email protected] when I click that link: "Oops! That page can’t be found."

My wife has asked an art shipper for a quote. Interestingly, his trucks are designed for paintings and so he doesn't actually need crates -- just lots of vertical sections for holding paintings that are wrapped, I think.

Now we'll check on what to do with the rolled pieces. I'm sure she will have a strong preference for taking the work with her.
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Old Feb 11, 20, 11:30 pm
  #21  
 
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Originally Posted by shawbridge View Post
@arttravel, I get the following message from [email protected] when I click that link: "Oops! That page can’t be found."

My wife has asked an art shipper for a quote. Interestingly, his trucks are designed for paintings and so he doesn't actually need crates -- just lots of vertical sections for holding paintings that are wrapped, I think.

Now we'll check on what to do with the rolled pieces. I'm sure she will have a strong preference for taking the work with her.
I will reattach the link tomorrow from computer rather than phone.

I have not seen that type of truck but that may be because of my experience with various museums and older and perhaps more fragile paintings — canvas or panel.

Has someone recommended this shipper?

I hope I do not sound like an alarmist, but I know of too many people that have run into problems.

I want the exhibition to be a success, the business of art is very challenging.
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Old Feb 12, 20, 1:13 am
  #22  
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Though this thread has morphed away from being AA-specific, I think there's a lot of great discussion and information here. Let's move this to TravelBuzz to continue the conversation. Thanks! /JY1024, AAdvantage and TravelBuzz moderator
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Old Feb 12, 20, 1:43 am
  #23  
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Originally Posted by shawbridge View Post
... Now we'll check on what to do with the rolled pieces. I'm sure she will have a strong preference for taking the work with her.
any FedEx/UPS store will have shipping tubes of various diameter for the rolled pieces ... I have never had an issue with bringing one (perhaps two held together with large rubber bands) on board as a carry-on item and putting it in a closet (if the jet has one) or the overhead bin (length permitting)

on a couple occasions I have also slid the tube along the side wall beside my window seat, extending forward beside the foot space and the seat in front ... obviously that won’t work if seated at an exit row
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Old Feb 12, 20, 5:10 am
  #24  
 
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I imported a large (7'x5') and old portrait of my mother from the USA to the UK. Amazingly VS took it (properly double boxed and strengthened in the hold. At Customs, I went through the Something to Declare channel and the helpful officer simply said that it was almost impossible to value but he wouldn't pay anything for a portrait of someone else's mother by an unknown artist, and the frame couldn't be worth more than £100, so he didn't see why I was bothering to declare anything as it was within my allowance. In other words, he wasn't interested.
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Old Feb 12, 20, 7:54 am
  #25  
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jrl767 , thanks. That's what my wife has done in the past. The only question is whether we need a Temporary Import Bond or Carnet for a dual Canadian/US citizen bringing her artwork back and forth across the border.

lhrsfo , I do remember my wife telling a customs person someplace that she was bringing art she had made and he just waived her through. Can't remember which border.

arttravel , the art shipper she has used before (who is based in our city) subcontracts to the shipper from whom she just requested a quote (who is based where the paintings are now) for certain jobs. She figured it would be better to talk directly to the guy who owns the truck. It was much more informative.

I feel like you guys are guiding us in the right direction. Thanks.

​​​​JY1024 thanks for moving the discussion to the right place. I wasn't sure where it should go.
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Old Feb 24, 20, 10:03 pm
  #26  
 
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With duty free items, you will find that customs agent tend to just "waive you by" simply because there is no $$$$ to collect, and they do not want to deal with the paperwork. That doesn't mean that all of them will act this way, but for most of it, it will be in your favor. Another factor is that the artist is travelling with her work.

I've done numerous occasions where I have to clear goods that have been brought by individuals and meet them at the international terminal, but most of the items being brought in where expensive prototypes, jewelry for exhibitions, gold, precious stones and the like.
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