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Trying to locate copyright owner of MARGARET TARRANT

Posted: Wed Dec 31, 2014 5:42 pm
by khs10uk
My dear wife died suddenly a month ago, and her dying wish was that I should publish her poems. As an experienced self-publisher, this poses little difficulty for me.

One poem will be deficient without the appropriate image of Margaret Tarrant's painting Loving Shepherd of Thy Sheep, printed black and white about two and half inches across.

I have failed to find any trace of Margaret Tarrant's estate, and I wonder whether contributors here might be able to advise me.

Of course I would be pleased to pay a reasonable and appropriate fee to the copyright owner. If progress cannot be made, I would prefer to go ahead and include a 'disclaimer': 'Whilst every effort has been made to locate...' etc.

If there a preferred wording for such a thing?


Posted: Wed Dec 31, 2014 7:52 pm
by AndyJ
Hi Keith,
I have to admit that on reading your post I had no idea who Margaret Tarrant was. However a useful Wikipedia article soon enlightened me. Based on the links contained in the Wikipedia entry it is obvious that her work is still readily available and so clearly her estate is earning a revenue today. According to the Medici Society website:
She died on 28 July 1959, leaving some pictures to friends and the rest of her estate to 12 charities.
On the basis of that I suggest you contact the Medici Society to see if they know which charity inherited the rights to Loving Shepherd of Thy Sheep. It would appear from this extract on another website that the Medici Society may well be licensed by the current owners of the copyright:
This lovely print " Loving Shepherd Of Thy Sheep " by Margaret Tarrant, the famous children's book illustrator (1888-1959) is published by The Medici Society Ltd and is numbered MAS 513
However, if they are unable to help, the next place I would have suggested is the Design and Artists Collecting Society (DACS) but as this search shows, they do not represent her estate and they say they have no further details.
In the unlikely event that the Medici Society can't assist, I suggest you contact the Probate Registry for a copy of Margaret Tarrant's will as this should provide details of the 12 recipient charities, and it would then be a matter of contacting each in turn to find out who held the rights to that particular painting.
As searches for missing heirs go, I think this one will prove much easier than most. I certainly wouldn't advise going ahead with the idea of publishing without permission or a licence, in the hope that a disclaimer will protect you. In this case I would say it almost certainly won't.

Posted: Wed Dec 31, 2014 8:51 pm
by khs10uk
Thank you for your very thorough reply. This is most helpful, and I will start my investigations as soon as I can. If I remember, I will post the results, especially if I think they might be helpful for other people.