She's an Artist wrote:
I get that. I understood that - well maybe not exactly your take on the words, but the theme of the LIFE Cover. That's what I'm trying to say - and obviously not doing it well. Gagosian, Elderfield and Dylan are not stupid. There has to be something more here. According to the gallery, The LIFE Cover is confirmed to be a Dylan piece. It does seem that 'a game' was set from the start. Read that Cover. I assume Gagosian and Elderfield must have known exactly what Dylan was doing with these paintings. My guess is they have been in the artworld too long not to know what they were seeing. That Richard Prince has written a piece in the catalog leads me to believe that everyone must have known that this series was all about 'appropriation to the maximum'. The line that these paintings were Dylan's own 'visual journal' and 'firsthand depictions of people, street scenes, etc...' could only work publicly BEFORE these paintings went on view. I believe they all must have known that the photo sources would be found. And they were. So far: of the 18 paintings on view, 11 photos have been found. And what has that done? It's turned what seems to have been a PR game into a PR nightmare. Why would all of these intelligent people wish to put their credibility on the line, to this extent, if there isn't more to this than what we already know? Appropriation is not new in the art world. It is a part of art history. One artist 'borrowing' from another to create a new statement. It is USUALLY not the kind of almost total appropriating from a source that we see here. I really do believe that there is something more that we are still missing. At least I sure hope so. Because right now it seems that from the reporting of this Internationally that many people must be wondering how Gagosian could have been fool enough (or worse) to have mounted this exhibit and how Dylan could have been naiive enough (or worse) not to believe his photo sources would be found. This is alluded to on the LIFE Cover. I can't believe that they started this game to destroy their credibility. What would be the point? I believe there is a key to all this that we have not found yet.
As you know if you've been following the thread from its start, I've also felt that the Life
cover is a deliberate message and something, given the image, of a preemptive strike against the whole "Dylan steals" meme. People were speculating about its meaning even before the "Opium" painting was discovered to be based on the Leon Busy photo. I think Dylan asked that it be placed on the Gagosian site as a representative "artist work" and that the Gagosian was instructed to respond to inquiries that it was part of the "Asia Series," knowing full well that speculation would increase when the image was placed in neither installation nor catalog.
I also think it deliberately Warholian and probably connected to this...http://expectingrain.com/discussions/vi ... =6&t=49396
Given his reference to Warhol in the Elderfield interview, one of the few times he's gone on record about Warhol and hasn't spoken of him with disdain, btw, and that the dimensions of the Life
image are even larger than the Double Elvis that used to belong to Mr.D. I think someone is making a statement, as most of that (what I believe is a) bogus "interview" is a statement. The references to Duchamp, photos and camera obscura
are very deliberate planted, in my opinion.
In some ways, the whole thing has become a work of art, hasn't it? as "She's an Artist" noted.
As to why the Gagosian and Elderfield would knowingly be a party to it, to misquote Una Merkel in the original "Parent Trap," I can think of more than six million reasons why, or at least a good chunk of that action, if they were actually aware that the paintings were based on photos. However, it's just as likely that they weren't, and chalked up the whole Life
image thing as a wonderful example of Bob eccentricity.
And, in the end, what harm? I know from my research that Dylan licensed the two Magnum images. It's worth noting that when I contacted one of the photographers, it was obvious he wasn't aware of the situation and was shocked and a little angry when I informed him. A few days later when I followed up, he refused to make any comment. What had happened during the intervening period? I had contacted Magnum, that's what had happened. After checking with a few other sources, all of whom dried up as the story hit the media, it became clear that the lid had been clamped down and no one involved was going to say nothing to no one no how.
Anyway, if Dylan's people licensed two photos, I feel pretty confident that they also licensed any more they felt needed to be licensed. As to the Okinawa Soba photos, they're public domain and clearly stated so on his site. As he said in this thread, common Creative Commons practice is to acknowledge the source. But, as I
said, would we really expect Bob Dylan to do that or expect any more or any less from someone who is a serial appropriator?
Again, I feel pretty confident that if any more photos are discovered, they also will be public domain or licensed.
And finally. just to note how over-the-top this has become, I recently received an email from someone who felt the Dylan additions to the Life
cover were a hidden anagram and, when s/he had decoded them, found...
"Bob Butts Tempt," which, rather than some reference to Milkcow's obsession with Mr. D.'s posterior, my correspondent claimed was "obviously" making note of the fact that Dylan had a smoking addiction.
I'm afraid they were serious.