In 1982, the Guinos and Renoirs entered into an agreement to
implement the Court judgment. The agreement (known as the Convention)
provides that the Guino family is to control production, quality control and custody of the original plaster
casts relative to the pertinent statues.
The Convention also provides that the Renoirs
agree to ‘give all plasters tat they hold” to the caster “SUSSE.” Under the Convention, the Guinos
were given exclusive rights to create subsequent editions, and the Renoir successors
renounced the right to produce and market these sculptures.
BACKGROUND OF THE FRENCH LITIGATION
18, 1995, the Guino family, by and through Socite Civile, brought suit in
the District Court at Paris
(hereinafter referred to as “the French Action”) against Jean-Emmanuel.
Renoir, Claude Renoir,
Jr., Dido Renoir, The Galley Rodeo, Paul Renoir and Louis Hernandez.’
the defendants named in the French Action received actual notice of the complaint and had an opportunity to defend
themselves. Indeed, defendants Jean-Emmanuel
Renoir, Red star
Corporation, Louis Hernandez, Paul Renoir and Mrs. Sophie Renoir-Doisne
represented in the
French Action by counsel.
French Action arose from the sale and distribution by respondents of
counterfeit Guino/Renoir statues. In
that suit, Socite Civile alleged (and the Paris Court later found) tat the statues were either outright counterfeits or works
made from illegally retained casts in violation of Article 122-4 of the
French Literary and Artistic Property Code. Article 122-4 of that French statute prohibits a fill
or partial reproduction of a work without the authorization of the author
or his legal representative.
During the course of the
French Action, it was revealed that Mr. Alain Renoir (the sole
heir to the estate of
Dido Renoir and Jean Renoir) and Mr. Jacques Renoir (the heir of cine-haif
of Claude Renoir, Jr.’s estate) had no involvement in any wrongful
actions. As a consequence, those parties voluntarily
realigned themselves as party-plaintiffs and joined Socite Civile in the
litigation as co-plaintiffs against the remaining defendants Jean-Emmanuel
Renoir, Red star
Hernandez, The Gallery Rodeo, Mr. Paul Renoir, and Mi-s. Sophie
8 JUDGMENT GRANTED MONETARY AND
On April 8,1998, the District Court at Paris, 3d Chamber,
Section 2, rendered a Judgment against respondents arising from their
sale and distribution of counterfeit Renoir/Guino statues in the United States. A true and
correct certified copy of the April 8 Judgment and its English translation are collectively attached
hereto as Exhibits A and B. . Pursuant to the April 8
Judgment, the French District Court found in pertinent part as
S follows: (I) “the production and marketing of the
sculptures from shared works by Richard GUINO and Pierre Auguste RENOIR,2
without the authorization of their beneficiaries, constitutes acts of forgery,” (2) “REDSTAR
CORPORATION and the RODEO GALLERY, by producing and/or marketing works made from the
shared works of Messrs. RENOIR axid GUINO have become jointly responsible,” and (3) “Mr.
Jean-Emmanuel RENOIR and Mrs. HERNANDEZ, by promoting forged castings and
issuing certificates of authenticity have also become jointly responsible
The April 8 Judgment ordered
Jean-Emmanuel Renoir, Mrs. Louise Hernandez, Red star Corporation (“Respondents”) and The
Gallery Rodeo to pay to Socite Civile, Mr. Alain Renoir and Mr. Jacques Renoir (“Petitioners”)
“the amount of THREE MILLION FRANCS (F 3,000,000).” Id. The April 8 Judgment
also ordered Respondents “to pay the amount of THIRTY THOUSAND FRANCS (F 30,000)” to
Petitioners. Id. atp. 21.
In addition to awarding
monetary damages, pursuant to articles 15 ad 16 of the Hague Convention of March 18, 1970, the April 8
Judgment directs the issuance of Letters Rogatory requiring Respondents to ‘submit all accounting
elements in support of the castings undertaken of the works, [including] the log of castings, the
sales accounting, and any specific detail on the nature of the promotion and distribution
transactions undertaken.” Id.
Respondents were notified of entry of the April 8 Judgment.
pertinent works are
“Head of Little Venus”, “Medium Washwoman”, “Head of’
Venus Vetrix”, “Bust
of Mrs. Renoir”, "Large Maternity”, “Bust of Paris”, “Little Standing
Venus and base of the
Judgment of Paris” and “The Blacksmith” (collectively, the “Works”).
Respondents have failed to pay any amounts due and owing under the
April 8 Judgment arid have otherwise failed to comply with
their executory obligations there under.
The April 8 Judgment is final,
conclusive and enforceable. It has not been vacated, modified, stayed, or set aside.
By reason of the
foregoing, Petitioners are entitled to enforcement of the April 8 Judgment in the United States.
PRAYER FOR RELIEF
WHEREFORE, Petitioners pray
for entry of a Judgment by this Court that incorporates the terms of the April 8 Judgment as follows:
For the sum of $ 488,560.00, which
represents Three Million Francs (F 3,000,000) as of April 8,1998, together with interest thereon
at the legal rate from April 8, 1998; For the sum of$ 4,885.60, which
represents Thirty Thousand Francs (P30,000) as of April 8, 1998, together with interest thereon at
the legal rate from April 8, 1998;
For the issuance of Letters Rogatory directing Respondents to submit all accounting elements in support of the castings
undertaken of the Works, a log of the castings, an accounting of the sales, information on the
promotion and distribution of the Works, and the name of the company (or companies) assigned to cast and
store the Works;
For costs of suit herein incurred: and For such other and further relief as the Court may deem
Dated: October ,4,
LOEB & LOEB LLP
PETER S. SELVIN
LISA L. HORLICK
Attorneys for Petitioners
Socite Civile Succession Richard
Alain Renoir, and Jacques Renoir
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