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Spring Symposium: Digital Art and Blockchain

  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law 55 5th Avenue , Jacob Burns Moot Court Room New York, NY 10003 United States (map)

Elena Zavelev, Founder & CEO of New Art Academy will be a speaker at this event.

This event is organized by Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal (AELJ)

3:00 PM – 7:30 PM

Blockchain promised to change everything. While that might not have come true yet, please join the Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal as we consider how blockchain has changed the art world. The first panel will discuss how blockchain art and digital collectibles present challenges to art law. The second panel will consider the intersection of blockchain technologies and the legal processes governing art transactions.

3 New York State C.L.E. Credits Available, transitional and non-transitional in: Areas of Professional Practice

3:00 P.M: Digital Art Panel

4:45 P.M: Blockchain Panel

Reception to follow


3:00 P.M.

Panel 1: Digital art and digital collectibles.

Moderator: Christopher Buccafusco


  • Ross Blum

  • Steve Schindler

  • Amy Whitaker

  • Elena Zavelev

4:45 P.M.

Panel 2: Art law and Blockchain

Moderator: Jeanne Schroeder


  • Tonya Evans

  • Derek Fincham

  • Katya Fischer

Speaker Profiles

Christopher Buccafusco

Professor Buccafusco's research employs empirical social science methods to test fundamental assumptions about how the intellectual property system functions. IP law attempts to affect people's creative behavior by offering them incentives to innovate, share, and use new works and inventions, but very little is known about whether these incentives actually work. Using novel creativity experiments, Professor Buccafusco's research has shown that creators often do not behave the way that IP law assumes they will. His studies have explored how different kinds of incentives affect creativity, how creators think about borrowing from others' efforts, and how creators assign value to their innovations. The results of these studies challenge important aspects of IP law, and they suggest opportunities for improving the legal system and creative economies.

Ross Blum

Ross Blum is the Chief Operating Officer At Quidd. Ross leads global partnership initiatives across all content, distribution, and strategic opportunities, while also overseeing the Creative and Operations teams. A believer in positivity, Ross has led many cross-functional initiatives leveraging a strong business acumen to drive short, medium- and long-term results for Quidd.
Ross is a registered attorney in the State of New York, holding a J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. Ross has also received an M.S. in Sports Management from Georgetown University and a B.S. from Babson College.

Steve Schindler

Steven R. Schindler is one of the founding partners of Schindler Cohen & Hochman LLP. Twenty years after it was founded, SC&H continues to earn its reputation as one of the City’s outstanding litigation and art law boutiques. In addition to being a senior member of the firm’s litigation practice, Steve also heads SC&H’s Art Law Group. This practice area combines SC&H’s formidable litigation expertise with a deep knowledge of the art market and its specific legal issues. Steve regularly advises art galleries, other art related businesses, collectors, artists, and not-for-profit corporations in the art space on transactional matters, such as the sale and acquisition of art and their relationships with dealers, banks and auction houses, and has litigated cases involving the authenticity, title, provenance and appraisals of art.

Amy Whitaker

Amy Whitaker is an assistant professor in Visual Arts Administration at New York University. She speaks widely on blockchain including at the Fast Company Innovation Festival, at Digital de Suite, and in graduate courses in both the business and art schools at NYU. Amy’s essay on the blockchain co-inventors, “The Eureka Moment that Made Bitcoin Possible,” appeared in the Wall Street Journal in 2018. Her white paper on fractional equity for artists using blockchain (with Roman Kräussl) has been cited in the Art Newspaper, Artforum, Artsy, ArtsDaily, and Forbes. Amy began working on blockchain as an outgrowth of a 2014 artists’ project on “The Social Life of Artistic Property.” She has advised the blockchain company Bitmark since 2015. Amy is author of Museum Legs (Hol Art Books, 2009) and Art Thinking (Harper Business, 2016), and is working on the forthcoming Economics of Visual Art (Cambridge). She holds an MBA from Yale and an MFA in painting from the Slade, and a first degree in political science and art from Williams College.

Elena Zavelev

Elena Zavelev is a contributor to Forbes magazine and the founder and CEO of New Art Academy, the authority on ArtTech, blockchain and AI for the global art market. Elena is a collector of crypto and digital art and loves discovering and supporting emerging new media artists. Since its launch in 2017, New Art Academy has hosted a number of international conferences and events in partnership with Forbes Media, eBay, Christie’s, NYU, NeueHouse and others.

Well-positioned within the global art and tech space and aware of its great potential, New Art Academy’s next step is to create the first-ever contemporary and digital art fair, CADAF.

CADAF’s first edition will take place May 3-5, 2019 in New York and will coincide with Frieze and TEFAF international art fairs.

Jeanne Schroeder

Professor Schroeder practiced in corporate finance for 12 years as an associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore and a partner at Milgrim Thomajan & Lee. Her scholarly interests range from commercial law doctrine to feminist jurisprudential theory. Her current work is on recent amendments to Article 8 of the Uniform Commercial Code and in developing a feminist theory of law and economics incorporating the political philosophy of G.W. F. Hegel and the psychoanalytic theories of Jacques Lacan. Her book on this subject, The Vestal and the Fasces: Hegel, Lacan, Property, and the Feminine, was published in 1998, and her second, The Triumph of Venus: The Erotics of the Market, was published in 2004.

Tonya Evans

Tonya M. Evans, Esquire, is a Professor of Law at the University of New Hampshire School of Law (UNH Law), Chair of the Intellectual Property & Technology Online Programs. In her role as Chair, Professor Evans developed the UNH Law Blockchain, Cryptocurrency & Law online professional certificate program and its curriculum. Evans has expertise in the areas of intellectual property, new technologies (including blockchain and distributed ledger technology), entrepreneurship & innovation, entertainment law, trusts & estates, and municipal finance. She writes, speaks, and teaches primarily about the intersections of copyright and new technologies as well as estates law issues.

Derek Fincham

Derek Fincham is a Professor at South Texas College of Law Houston. His research interests include art law, heritage theft, antiquities looting, and repatriation. He holds a Ph.D. in Cultural Heritage law from the University of Aberdeen, King’s College and serves on the Editorial boards of both the International Journal of Cultural Property and the Santander Art and Culture Law Review. He writes about art and heritage regularly at . 

Katya Fischer

Katya Fisher, Esq. focuses on representing international businesses and entrepreneurs with a specific focus on media and technologies such as blockchain, cybersecurity, cryptocurrency and A.I. Katya is a member of the board of directors of Levelblox (OTC:LVBX), an advisor to IBM’s Blockchain Accelerator and to Marc Bell Capital.
A graduate of New York University and Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Katya is a former Howard M. Squadron Fellow at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy and has been selected to Super Lawyers as a "Rising Star" in Corporate Law in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. She is licensed in the state of New York and before the U.S. Tax Court.