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Information for artists

About Copyright Agency | Viscopy Copyright Agency and Viscopy are not-for-profit rights management organisations that connect users with creators of copyright material. Viscopy was set up by artists for artists. It provides rights management and statutory licensing services to more than 10,000 Australian and New Zealand artist members and over 40,000 international artists through reciprocal agreements with foreign collecting societies. Copyright Agency manages statutory licensing and the artists’ resale royalty scheme. It has more than 26,000 members which include authors, publishers, visual artists, illustrators and cartoonists.

Cover: John A Douglas, The Visceral Garden, (still) 2013, HD video single-channel with sound, 16.47 mins, © John A Douglas/Licensed by Viscopy

Both organisations are committed to advocating for artists’ rights and provide services that ensure artists are fairly rewarded for the reproduction of their work through issuing licences and collecting fees on their members’ behalf. Membership of both organisations is free.

As a member of Viscopy you grant Viscopy the right to administer the reproduction of your artwork in return for licensing fees. The licence does not mean that Viscopy owns the copyright in your work - it simply allows us and our extensive network of international partners to license works on your behalf. Artists retain the copyright of their work and can, of course, continue to use images of their work as they see fit. Artists can request the right of preapproval of licensing requests and may exclude certain works from being licensed for certain purposes.

Viscopy’s rights management services Serena Bonson, Wangarra Spirits (detail), 2013, stringy bark wood carving painted with ochre and pvc fixative, 188 x 13 x 10cm and 250 x 16 x 10cm Š Serena Bonson/ Licensed by Viscopy

Information for artists | 3

Why should you let Viscopy manage the rights to your work?

Viscopy’s team are experts in rights management. If someone wants to reproduce your work, simply refer them to us and we’ll handle everything for you. As your licensing agent we will negotiate copyright fees on your behalf and put an agreement in place for anyone who wants to reproduce your work. We’ll ensure that your artwork is reproduced to a high standard, attributed correctly and protected by a licence agreement. We manage the rights to a wide variety of artworks and artwork reproductions, including for books, film and television, websites, advertising, newspapers and magazines, posters, merchandise, greeting cards, exhibition catalogues, and more. We’ll look after the rights to your work, and you’ll receive fair payment for its use.

Exclusive Nancybird merchandise commissioned by the National Gallery Victoria for its 150th anniversary featuring Margaret Preston’s Strenocarpus – wheel flower c.1929 © Margaret Preston Estate/Licensed by Viscopy.


Because Viscopy is part of an extensive network of visual arts management organisations around the world, you may receive licence fees for the use of your work overseas. For more information on our licensing services or to join go to or call us on 1800 066 844.

Under statutory licence schemes set out in copyright legislation, artistic works and other content can be used without permission provided fair payment is made by the user. Artistic works may be used under the following statutory licence schemes: n

Copying and communication of books, magazines, newspapers, artistic works and other content in educational and public sector organisations – administered by Copyright Agency;


Copying and communication of television and other broadcasts for use in educational and public sector organisations – administered by Screenrights; and


Retransmitting free-to-air broadcasts by cable TV providers – administered by Screenrights.

What is statutory licensing?

Each of these schemes ensures that creators are fairly rewarded for use of their work. Through an agreement with Screenrights, Viscopy can manage payments from both of these schemes to members, making it easier for you to earn income from the copying of your work. You may also be entitled to licence fees if your work is used in similar schemes in another country.

Damien Hirst, Apotryptophanae, 1994. Household gloss on canvas. 81 x 87 inches. Image courtesy Jay Jopling. © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS/Licensed by Viscopy.


What is the Resale Royalty Scheme? Australia’s resale royalty scheme recognises artists’ rights and ensures that they receive their fair share when their works are resold. Through the scheme, artists are entitled to receive five per cent of the sale price when eligible works are resold. This important source of additional income for artists is administered by Copyright Agency and covers any original works of art, such as paintings, collages, drawings, prints, sculptures, ceramics, glassware, photographs and more. To make sure we can contact you when you receive resale royalties, register your contact details with us at 8

Melinda Harper, Untitled (detail) Š Melinda Harper/Licensed by Viscopy

Copyright Agency is committed to supporting the creative industries and building a strong foundation for Australian creators. Through the Cultural Fund, Copyright Agency supports a wide variety of projects assisting artists and others in the Australian cultural community to deliver new work and fresh initiatives.

Supporting Australian Creators

The Cultural Fund has two areas of focus: Cultural Fund – supporting major cultural projects to encourage innovation and develop local and foreign markets for Australian works. Career Fund – supporting individuals working in the publishing and visual arts to develop their skills and take their careers to the next level. The Cultural Fund also supports initiatives that connect creators with the educational sector, providing opportunities for students and other members of the community to learn from some of Australia’s best creators. Copyright Agency’s Board allocates one and a half per cent of the organisation’s income to the Fund each year. To apply for funding or to find out more visit

Anthony Lister, Cap Me Thrice 2011 mixed media on canvas, 198 x 192cm Image courtesy of Menzies Art Brands © Anthony Lister/Licensed by Viscopy


John Fries Award

The John Fries Award for emerging visual artists is an annual non-acquisitive award of $10,000 proudly presented by Copyright Agency | Viscopy. This generous prize celebrates and raises the profile of emerging and early-career artists. This is reflected in the annual John Fries Finalists’ Exhibition, a platform for some of the most exciting and challenging work being created at the emerging end of the contemporary art scene in Australia and New Zealand. The Award has been donated by the Fries family in memory of former Viscopy director and honorary treasurer, John Fries, who made a remarkable contribution to the life and success of Viscopy.

Vincent Namatjira, Award, 2013, acrylic on linen, 61 x 101cm John Fries Award finalist 2013 Š Vincent Namatjira/Licensed by Viscopy


To find out how you can enter, who the past winners are and more, visit

Join today Membership of Copyright Agency I Viscopy is free and you only need to join once. Copyright Agency and Viscopy are not-for-profit organisations. An administration fee to cover running costs is deducted from licensing fees and statutory payments collected for members. See our website for full details. Visit to join online today.

Find out more Toll free (within Australia) 1800 066 844

Jason Wing, Fossil Fuel (detail), 2013, cast resin, Royal Australian Navy pendant lamp, dimensions variable. Photograph by Adam Hollingworth. Š Jason Wing/Licensed by Viscopy

Viscopy Information for artists booklet  

Copyright Agency | Viscopy booklet about copyright licensing services for visual artists.

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