With a gallery contract, an artist grants an art gallery a usually exclusive right of representation, which can include responsibility for selling the artwork and agency on behalf of the artist, as well as regular exhibitions. It is also customary as part of the gallery contract for the gallery to undertake to take out liability insurance for the works of art surrendered. As compensation for its services, the artist grants the gallery a commission on the works of art sold by the gallery.
The gallery contract is a so-called innominate contract, i.e. a type of contract which is not expressly governed by law. However, to assess the gallery’s claim to commission, the provisions of the commission business according to Art. 425 et seq. of the Swiss Code of Obligations (OR) apply.