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Saturday, May 06, 2006
  Hazel Dooney Print
australian artist hazel dooney The Australian artist Hazel Dooney has a high resolution work that can be downloaded online and printed out as an original print. She will also sign the work if you send it to her, along with a stamped, self addressed envelope.

I can imagine Andy Warhol would be doing something like this if he was still alive. The only difference would probably be that he would charge $5000 for each download!
Anyway, here's what Hazel says about her print..

"Several years ago, the American sculptor, Robert Graham, came up with the bold idea of creating works that could be distributed over the web. He posted a series of high resolution drawings that could be downloaded for free from his site, reproduced on a collector's own home or office printer, then displayed as original Robert Graham prints. Part of the idea's strong appeal, for me, was that it ran counter to the commercial imperative of an increasingly avaricious art business and enabled those who might not normally be able to afford a work of any kind by a major artist to do so."

"I have long wanted to attempt something similar with my own work and now, finally, I have! Derived from themes dominant in my new paintings, I Will Not Be Your Give Man Anymore, is a twisted self-portrait that recasts the anguish of a familial relationship within the context of an Haitian zombie 'curse' (in reality, according to the author and ethnologist, Wade Davis, an insidious poisoning with a powerful marine neurotoxin) that turns its victim into a 'give man', a mindless slave not even worth giving away."

"The image is available to be downloaded free from my web site under a Creative Commons license. It can be reproduced and distributed in any way for any non-commercial purposes. For those of you who would still like to have my 'real' signature, along with an authenticating stamp, on the work's verso, you can send your print of the image along with an adequately sized, stamped (Australian only, please), self-addressed envelope to the studio's post box address listed on my site. However, the studio and I cannot be held responsible for any prints that are lost, damaged, or overlooked."
>> Contemporary Artists, Art Collecting, Art Marketing
BgArt News Blog Comments:
Interesting! Very bold, can you call it an original? I like the idea anyway, although prints usually are limited in numbers, also stamped with the number and signed.
It also means you can choose the quality of your print on your own, and size etc. Very neat.
You can always count on artists to push the boundaries... Why not give her signature for download and let others fill in the picture?
I guess it's kind of original if you send it to her to be signed and stamped.

And Karl, that's an interesting idea. I remember reading somewhere about the Australian artist Brett Whiteley refusing to sign his autograph for people on blank pieces of paper.
It probably makes sense, as the difficult part of the forgery is already done for you (the signature).
I have to confess that I was being a bit flip when I made the above comment. I apologize for that. There is no criticism of the artist intended. She has a neat idea. She confronts the key question of digitalization of art, and that I think is one of the biggest questions on the horizon in our new internet age.

As for sending out signatures to draw on, it may be that there is something in it after all. Think of the "I Power Blogger" logo that we keep on our blogs. In a sense that is a signature. Each blogger creates work under this signature, or another like it.

If a famous artist (say, Hockney) sent out thousands of signed blank sheets, it could in an odd way strike at the cult of personality that art has become. Each artist could create an original signed Hockney. It could lead to interesting results. The identity of the artist would be obscured, but the artist might feel liberated to create something new. The signature would already be a mark of success, so doubt would not be a problem.
I think it could work Karl. It would have to be differentiated in some way though. Perhaps a certain size or a particular type of paper that is always used for the signature works.

It's really not that much different to having assistants doing your work for you, it's just that this way you have no control of what your assistants do.

Maybe the artist that does the drawing could sign it too, making it a collaborative work.

Sounds like an original idea. Whether it's a good idea or not, who knows?..
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