Is giving lessons a violation of a lease clause saying that the premises are to be used”solely for the pupose of an artist’s studio”?

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Is giving lessons a violation of a lease clause saying that the premises are to be used”solely for the pupose of an artist’s studio”?

I think I have a studio lease at an art center contract says, ”Artists shall use the leased space solely for the purpose as an artists studio”. Does teaching individual students in my studio violate that clause. I view teaching my craft and skills just as much my “work” as painting a picture but they disagree.

Asked on August 12, 2011 Pennsylvania


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

The issue to your question is whether or not teaching is part of the custom and practice of your profession as an artist in general?

Read the terms of your written lease with your landlord. The written lease sets forth the obligations owed to you by the landlord and vice versa in the absence of state law on the subject. If the landlord prepared the written lease for you to sign, any ambiguities as to within it is to be construed against the peson who drafted the agreement and in favor of the person who did not.

The phrase you have stated in your facts for your question does not have any limitation on teaching and no specific definition as to what purpose is entailed as having an artist's studio.

In the town I live in, artists do their work, display their art, and teach, all in the same structure.

Sentiment is that your lease entitles you to teach and give lessons as part of the purpose of the artist's studio.

Good luck.

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