Richard Prince Loses “Fair Use” Lawsuit

Posted by The G on March 26, 2011 under The G Spot | Comments are off for this article

Photo by G.  Art by Richard Prince.

Jimi Hendrix T-Shirt by Richard Prince

The artworld is about to have a huge shockwave sent through it.  Artist Richard Prince just lost a court battle filed in 2008 that alleged he unlawfully used photographer Patrick Cariou’s work in Prince’s art.  I am a big fan of Richard Prince’s work and I don’t follow the news, so hearing about this story is distressing to me.  I try and be a lover of all art and I seem to really be turned on by artists pushing the creative envelope and taking their works further and further into the unknown.  Comparing the side by side images of Cariou vs. Prince’s works as shown on the Huffington Post, it’s not really a shock that Prince lost this case.  While Prince definitely gave the images a new twist a’la Richard Prince, it just makes me think that of all the images out there in the world, why wouldn’t an artist try and make something that has never been made before.

Artists appropriating other people’s work is nothing new (in any artistic field) and even after the ruling of a case like this, it will not be the last time.  I just don’t get it why when there are so many boundaries to break down, artists would choose to play within the existing borders.  Nothing turns me on artistically more than trying to describe someone’s work and instead of saying “it reminds me of so and so,” to be able to say “I’ve never seen (or heard) anything like this before.”

That’s my 2 cents.  What’s yours?

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