The Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth) (PPSA) came into force in 2012. It affects artists whose artworks
is placed on consignment with art galleries.
to this change in the law, an artist whose work was on consignment with a
gallery could assert their property ownership rights if the gallery went into
liquidation and regain possession provided that consignment could be proved. The
most common way was through a consignment agreement signed by both parties. If
the artwork had been sold but payment not received prior to liquidation,
payment to the artist would be prioritised out of the gallery's assets.
if the artist has registered the gallery on the Personal Property Securities
Register (PPSR), the artworks will have the highest priority in the case of gallery bankruptcy
and be returned to the artist. However, in the case of liquidation if the
artist has not registered, the artworks on consignment will be dealt with as
security interests and used to
secure the gallery's debts. The existence of consignment agreements will be