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Insurance for art historians

Individual insurance solutions, even if you do not belong to a professional association.

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Miquel Barceló, “El Planeta de los Toros”, luxury edition book, edition 9/50, 2017
Miquel Barceló, “El Planeta de los Toros”, luxury edition book, edition 9/50, 2017
Dr. Stephan Zilkens | Zilkens Kunstversicherung

We make sure you are safe.

For the members of German art history association “Deutscher Verband für Kunstgeschichte e.V.”, we have developed a professional liability insurance policy and a financial loss insurance policy on particularly favourable terms.

If you are not a member of a professional association, we also have the right individual solution for you.

Dr. phil. Stephan Zilkens

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 or get personal advice: 0221.80068420


As part of the Art Cologne, we invite you to the annual Cologne Fine Art Insurance Talk.
Boris Becker, „Bir el Shadia Hedschas Bahn“ aus dem Projekt „Lawrence von Arabien“, 2010

Insuring liability

for art historians

We have conceived special insurance solutions to meet our clients’ individual needs with very competitive conditions. For members of the German art history association “Deutscher Verband für Kunstgeschichte e.V.” (, we provide a professional liability insurance and an errors and omissions insurance specially designed for professionials in the art world.

Even if you are not a member of a professional association, we have individual insurance solutions, either flexible or made-to-measure, for art historians.

We will need you to fill out and sign the application form as well as the completed brokerage contract so that we can realise the offer with insurers. We regret that the whole documentation will be in German only:

Please send us the signed application and the brokerage contract as scanned images (, fax: +49 221 80068421 or by post: Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker GmbH, Eupener Straße 74, 50933 Cologne, Germany.


Extensive archive of our lectures on art and the art insurance business for you to read.
Edition of Nationale Suisse, photoprint, ed. 63/150, 2011

Why do you need professional liability insurance or errors and omissions insurance at all?

If, in the course of your occupational activities, you harm third parties or such parties come to grief because of you or your occupational activities, be the damage physical, material or financial, you can be made liable in accordance with § 823 of the German Civil Code (BGB). To protect you from such financial demands, we offer you the option of insurance cover in the form of professional liability insurance and pecuniary damage liability insurance. The insurer settles justified claims and contests unjustified claims on your behalf. Below, we show a few practical examples for the sake of clarity and understanding.

Examples of damage covered by classic professional liability insurance for art historians:

  • You accidentally spill paint on the floor and a third party slips on it and injures him/herself.
  • On a guided tour, someone falls over the bag that you put down and injures him/herself. After that he or she is unable to work for three days.
  • You drop the object to be assessed and it shatters.
  • A painting is torn while being framed.
  • During the assessment process you cause a “dog-ear” in a valuable book.

Examples of damage covered by errors and omissions insurance for art historians:

  • You are organising an exhibition and write an incorrect exhibition date in the invitation, as a result of which everyone comes too early. Travel expenses are incurred.
  • You give an incorrect recommendation for conservation.
  • You make a mistake while assessing the conservation of a historical monument. Your client suffers financial loss as a result.
  • When preparing a catalogue you overlook some works.
  • An expert opinion on a painting’s value is too high and the client pays too much for the work in question. He demands compensation from you.
  • While giving an expert opinion, you overlook important sources and come to incorrect conclusions – the client is suing you for the resultant pecuniary consequences.

Please talk to us about it. We’ll be glad to advise you.


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Dr. Stephan Zilkens | Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker


About us

It is the love of art and the absolute satisfaction of our clients that has made us so successful for more than 35 years.

We deliberately focus on the things we know something about and have experts for all essential areas of risk management and occupational pension provision. For special requirements, we can draw on our network of experienced specialists.

Few insurance brokers have such a broad range of experience in all areas of insurance. Through many years of experience, both with insurance companies and insurance brokers, and always in close contact with our clients, we have learned to speak all the necessary languages. We have been able to develop our current expertise through many years of working for other companies. Innovation is our constant companion.

So that your art is safe everywhere.


Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker GmbH is an owner-run (CV Dr. Stephan Zilkens) company. This lends a special significance to our corporate philosophy, as the owner vouches with his name for the company’s services and performance.

Two characteristics define our brand essence. One is our love of art and the other is our customers’ absolute satisfaction. Only the consonance of these two factors makes us successful.

To fulfil our aspiration of providing reliable orientation in an increasingly complex world, we adhere to a set of ethical and moral principles. The quality of our work plays a special part in this process. We want to and can distinguish ourselves only with excellent performance and customer satisfaction.

We endeavour to advise our customers neutrally and in the optimum manner with a high level of expertise. Reliability is seen as something special these days, but we live and breathe it on a daily basis. We always search for the the best and safest solution because we have geared our customer relationships to the long-term.