Friday, September 24, 2021

What the hell are NFTs, and why is the art world crazy over them?

If you’re still lost as to what the fundamentals of NFTs are, I explain it here in an art & law essay from 2008, including how NFT’s are really not anything new but rather just another property right, albeit one that could revolutionize art.


Tom Lawson, artist and Dean of CalArts School of Art on Metro Pictures

After hearing that Metro Pictures gallery would close at the end of this year, I woke this morning thinking of an interview I did with artist and dean of the CalArts School of Arts, Tom Lawson, almost 15 years ago, which contains Lawson’s poignant thoughts on the origins of Metro Pictures.


Robert Indiana lawsuit on verge of being settled (for the most part)

More here.


“the law, as it currently stands, does not confer a property interest to the subject of a photograph regardless of how objectionable the photograph’s origins may be”

A Massachusetts judge has dismissed a lawsuit by a woman claiming that she, not Harvard University, is the rightful owner of haunting images of an enslaved father and daughter who she says were her ancestors.

More here.


Jeff Koons and Pompidou Lose Copyright Infringement Appeal

For those that are still in awe of copyright infringement cases, here’s an update on the Koons/Pompidou/Pig controversy. In brief, Koons and the Pompidou lost the appeal and won themselves an increase in monetary awards due to the photographer of the girl/pig image. As of this moment, Koons still displays the image of the pig and girl on his website.


Can Artists Use Their Sale Contracts to Game the System?

Great article by Lauren van Haaften-Schick on the artists’ contract.

In March 1971, a broadside boldly labelled The Artist’s Reserved Rights Transfer and Sale Agreement rolled off an independent press in New York. Across the poster’s front was a manifesto by Seth Siegelaub, the innovative conceptual art curator-publisher and former dealer, outlining ‘some generally acknowledged inequities in the art world’. Its verso, drafted by the young lawyer Robert Projansky, contained 19 clauses in heavy-handed legalese promising to remedy those ills.

Did it, or does it, work?


Can’t fool artificial intelligence

Detecting art forgeries is hard and expensive. Art historians might bring a suspect work into a lab for infrared spectroscopy, radiometric dating, gas chromatography, or a combination of such tests. AI, it turns out, doesn’t need all that: it can spot a fake just by looking at the strokes used to compose a piece.

More here.


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