You may have seen this story and image floating around social media. It's a tale of a painter who's used a photo he's seen as the starting point for a painting he's made. Photographer finds out gets pissed off and thinks "nice one I can make a quid I'll sue the fucker" it goes to court. It's a bit like the Richard Prince type thing only this time the photographer wins. Art world is a bit miffed, freedom of artistic expression they cry, conservative photo world declares victory for copyright and the status quo. Anyway you can read the tale and common sense comment HERE
Now you may be thinking that I'm having a go at the photographer Katrijn Van Giel well I'm not. It's a strong portrait that's been appropriated by a well known successful artist so I understand their reaction, although in this case I think both the photographer and the law are acting daft. If it was one of my pictures and a top artist like Luc Tuymans decided to use one of my photos I would not only be chuffed to death but I would also milk it like fuck. Still Van Giel is quids in.
It's not a good decision for art though and the reaction from a lot of folk in the photography world just shows their plain ignorance and lack of understanding when it comes to issues being raised by contemporary art. This worries me (as far as photography goes but not like global warming or the new bus lane on the East Lancs Road) because it's some of the movers and shakers of the photography world who think this is a victory.
I copied the below post from someone on facebook. I've not said who it is so I hope they won't sue me over copyright.
"You can see from my photos that I brave the elements to make them-I am up in the middle of the night, or early morning- or outside in the very cold. They are my point of view- the way I see things - my work and the photographs are the end result, unless I want to do something else with them. I am always talking about how much I resent painters saying they want to paint my photograph. I think painters should find their own subject matter- and go out and take photos if they use photos as inspiration. I think, I can paint my own photograph, but other's should not. I get testy. Of course I have no control when I post them. The choice seems to be that my photographs get seen every few years in a gallery setting, and they are seen no where else, or I post them online, and obviously, I chose to post them. It is, to me, a question of morals, integrity and originality
PS I just saw this! https://www.lensculture.com/articles/katerina-belkina-paint-a-series-of-photographic-self-portraits