DACS hits £100m paid out in Artist's Resale Right Royalties

    We're celebrating the landmark distribution of over £100m in Resale Right royalties to artists and artist’s estates in the UK. These payments support artists ongoing practice and livelihoods, and ensure an ongoing stake in the increasing value of their work.  

    Today DACS announces that it has paid out the milestone sum of £100,286,451 in Artist's Resale Right Royalties to 5,624 artists and artist’s estates since the right passed into UK law in 2006.

    This represents a significant milestone in a year of celebration, following the inclusion of the right in the UK-EU Trade Agreement, securing this vital source of revenue for artists and estates in the post-Brexit economy.

    The Artist’s Resale Right is a vital source of income for artists working in the UK today, which provides them with an ongoing stake in the increasing value of their work. The right also plays a significant role in the art world eco-system, enabling galleries, auction houses and art dealers to contribute directly to artists and their ongoing practice.

    Although Resale Right royalties are payable on any secondary sales of works over €1,000, we know that these payments overwhelmingly benefit artists selling work at the lower end of the scale, with over 50% of eligible sales falling under £5000.

    Most artists in receipt of these royalties sell work exclusively beneath that threshold, which demonstrates how vital this income is for artists working with less financial security. Particularly at a time when artists have been so heavily impacted by the pandemic, with galleries and venues forced to close and the indefinite postponement of many projects. In this landscape, coupled with funding cuts across the arts, Resale Right royalties help artists sustain their practice by paying for studio space and materials.

    'For auction houses, bidders and collectors resales are part of everyday life. But for the artist, auction results have a much more personal impact. Royalties from the Artist’s Resale Right help to fund my continued existence, but also contain an acknowledgement that I still have a connection to the work. That some of me is in the painting. And that regardless of where in the UK this painting is sold, DACS will let me know about it.'

    Maria Farrar, artist and DACS member


    ‘I believe a lot of early career artists can find the secondary market intimidating and confusing. The Artist’s Resale Right helps artists to keep track of their work, and also provides some much-needed income to supplement the costs of being a practising artist; running a studio, buying materials etc. 

    I’d say to any fellow artists starting out on their journey that they should look into royalties, as they may be owed money they didn’t even know about before. The Artist’s Resale Right recognises our work, as well as allowing us to continually benefit from it once it’s out of our hands and into the wider world!’


    Nick Goss, artist and DACS member


    'DACS is tremendously proud to have paid out over £100 million pounds in Resale Right royalties to more than 5,600 artists and estates since 2006.

    The Artist’s Resale Right provides artists with much needed income and an ongoing stake in their work.  In the current climate as artists face the myriad challenges of the pandemic, many without the security of government support, that is more important than ever!'


    Gilane Tawadros, DACS Chief Executive


    'Pre-covid, the creative industries contributed over £100 billion to the UK economy. Despite their role in that success, we know that many visual artists are struggling with projects stalled indefinitely and huge hits to their income.

    Like all other industries, it is vital that artists are paid for their work and for the increased value that their work gathers. This is an essential part of making it possible for artists to pursue the livelihoods that make such a contribution to all our lives.'


    Margaret Heffernan, DACS Board chair

    Find out more


    Read our DACS Meets blogs where artists explain what the Artist's Resale Right means to them:

    Are you an artist or a beneficiary of an artist's estate? Find out how you can benefit from the Artist's Resale Right through free membership of DACS.

    Contact us:

    Phone: +44 (0) 20 7780 7575
    Email: membership@dacs.org.uk

    Image credit: Ena Morita
    Courtesy Ota Fine Arts



    Posted on 06/09/2021 by Bel New