Supply of goods by artist in various states to art galleries. The question here is regarding taxation of the supply of art works by artists in different States other than the State in which they are registered as a taxable person. In such cases, if the art work is selected by the buyer, then the supplier issues a tax invoice only at the time of supply. It was represented that the artists give their work of art to galleries where it is exhibited for supply. The confusion here was regarding the treatment of this activity whether it is taxable in the hands of the artist when the same is given to the art gallery or at the time of actual supply by the gallery.

It is seen that clause (c) of sub-rule (1) of Rule 55 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Rules, 2017 (hereafter referred as “the Rules”) provides that the supplier shall issue a delivery challan for the initial transportation of goods where such transportation is for reasons other than by way of supply. Further, Rule 55 (3) of the Rules provides that the said delivery challan shall be declared as specified in Rule 138 of the Rules. It is also seen that sub-rule (4) of Rule 55 of the Rules provides that where the goods being transported are for the purpose of supply to the recipient, but the tax invoice could not be issued at the time of removal of goods for the purpose of supply, the supplier shall issue a tax invoice after delivery of goods.

A combined reading of the above provisions indicates that the art work for supply on approval basis can be moved from the place of business of the registered person (artist) to another place within the same State or to a place outside the State on a delivery challan along with the e-way bill wherever applicable and the invoice may be issued at the time of actual supply of art work.

It is also clarified that the supplies of the art work from one State to another State will be inter-State supplies and attract integrated tax in terms of section 5 of the IGST Act, 2017.

It is further clarified that in case of supply by artists through galleries, there is no consideration flowing from the gallery to the artist when the art works are sent to the gallery for exhibition and therefore, the same is not a supply. It is only when the buyer selects a particular art work displayed at the gallery, that the actual supply takes place and applicable GST would be payable at the time of such supply.

This was clarified vide Circular no. 22/22/2017-GST dated 21st December 2017


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