Social Media ‘Art’ @ $90,000 Per Piece

“New Portraits” is primarily made up of Instagram pictures of women, many in sexually charged poses

I found this story quite disturbing and in my opinion, it has a huge impact on intellectual property laws and what we own (or not own) as artists or people in general, once the property becomes virtual. In this story by Jessica Contrera, Washington Post – your Instagram photos aren’t yours: Someone can sell them as art for $90,000, which raises the questions once more about what is truly yours once it goes virtual.  The Internet is the place where nothing goes to die. Those embarrassing photos of your high school dance you marked “private” on Facebook? The drunk Instagram posts? The NSFW snapchats? If you use social media, you’ve probably heard a warning akin to “don’t post anything you wouldn’t want your employer (or future employer) to see.” We agree, and are adding this caveat: Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want hanging in an art gallery. (What about what other people post of you, without you knowing?) This month, painter and photographer Richard Prince reminded us that what you post is public, and given the flexibility of copyright laws, can be shared — and sold — for anyone to see. As a part of the Frieze Art Fair in New York, Prince displayed giant screenshots of other people’s Instagram photos without warning or permission. The collection, “New Portraits,” is primarily made up of pictures of women, many in sexually charged poses. They are not paintings, but screenshots that have been enlarged to 6-foot-tall inkjet prints. According to Vulture, nearly every piece sold for $90,000 each. Read more here

6 thoughts on “Social Media ‘Art’ @ $90,000 Per Piece”

  1. Very interesting, Joycelin. All photos of me are embarrassing, that’s why I rarely post any! Sorry, I’m being flippant. You have made your points about instagrams and the flexibility of copyright laws very well.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. There are some awful photos of me. Seriously, I’m not at photogenic. Louise, who’s a really good photographer, says I ‘pull a face like and alien’ when I face the camera. That’s probably true because I hate posing.


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