The Case for Copying | The Art Assignment | PBS Digital Studios

84 thoughts on “The Case for Copying | The Art Assignment | PBS Digital Studios

  1. the similar baseline of under pressure was such a great little detail to this video.

  2. Last year we had a giant media scandal about painter Luc Tuymans "copying" a photographer's headshot of a politician. His practice is all about copying images and how we look and manipulate images, his initial paintings were made by projecting film stills onto the canvas to reproduce the picture. Yet because he thought it was despicable for the Belgian court to even take this case seriously he defended by saying it was a parody. Eventually they made arrangements outside of court but since then people actually think he's just a copycat rather than an artist.

  3. Copying in art means to transform it. One work today copying one or many from the past is a new take, a remix of sorts, that takes the past use of images and forms and makes a new way for them to be seen and understood in the evolving contexts of the society and communities in which it's made.

  4. I am an artist and I am against copying. Why would an artist purposefully deny himself/herself the euphoria generated by creation? Why would you be socially percieved as "the copycat" instead of "the unique and iconic artist"? It's as if one would purposefully walk outside in public with stinky garbage stuck on his/her clothing, as if one has no dignity and wants to ruin his/her public image by doing something so low class as copying is. Would that be purposeful or artistic? I really doubt that. Allright, copying a work to improve technique is one thing, I don't do it, but for those who do it, afterwards,please, just burn it! Out of respect for the original artist and the original work, seriously!

  5. What Picasso did was NOT copying, it was re-interpreting. I agree with that, but NEVER with Sherrie Levine's shameless and disgusting copying and claiming as her own.

  6. again, missing the important point here. Copying in itself is not the issue, its the motivation to or purpose for the copying: the value system that lies behind why the copying is being done. The reason Francis Bacon's pope holds up, without receiving the same criticism for "copying" that others would receive, is because Bacon's purpose for copying followed the tradition of WHY artists copied in the past: to refer to another point of understanding or method toward the grand purpose artists shared: to uplift their sense of being through a meditation on the divine, a devotional purpose. With Bacon there exists a "brutality of fact" that he recognizes in this tradition as we move along in the "enlightened" era, preserving certain feelings of reverence that still remain by "copying" from tradition. When artists copy for self aggrandizement and easy legitimizing, its a meditation on self, a tactic for notoriety, and people see right through this as well.

    This quick conclusion that “copying shows that the idea of the original, originating genius is a myth” also relates to the nihilistic, atheistic state of mind that artists find themselves in while also taking on the role of artist today, a role birthed in the tradition of devotional making, with values for making rooted in the value of divine origin. If a person cannot justify their origin because “god is a myth", they also cannot justify their own being and thus the things that they make. The weak proposition that authorship is a myth is a projection of the fear that god is a myth, thus nothing is of original or significant creation, it all just “happened”. In most cases, the copying today has a very simple and understandable purpose given the multiple desperate situations artist find themselves in: the purpose is to easily legitimize their career by 1. grabbing the attention of the powers that be with familiar signs and 2. using the logic of copying created by those same powers with the very same terminology: "appropriation". Its playing by the rules to have a shot at the "big time". The ultimate goal is to give value to the self (in the form of praise and pay?). There is a lot at stake and a lot expected of an artist and when their own purpose is unclear to themselves , their actions become desperate. We see this more often than we find an artist with faith of any kind. EVERY problem in art even up to present day has to do with God and the inherent implications of such an abstract concept of origin: purpose (value in function) , infinity, (value in time), ideals (value to be), whether we try to bypass such an essential element of art history or when we face it head on.

  7. I think it's ok as long as we give credit or compensation. Borrowing from others is ok, we do it all the time but copying the exact same artwork without modifications and passing it off as your own is theft and plagiarism. If you get permission from the original artist and if you give him or her credit and/or compensation then it's ok. If I saw someone making millions off of my photography and passing it off as his own I would be pissed!

  8. I like this series but there is something in the way the contents are read (maybe too fast, no pauses?) that make them very difficult to follow for over a few minutes especially for non English mother tongue audiences.

  9. Picasso was initially coy about his artistic influences in interviews. The "Great artist's steal," comment should have silenced the army of hack writers hoping to fill magazine pages with… Picasso's- art-gibberish. The line about there being 3 basic literary plots and millions of variations on said plots, applies to art as well. 'Original' and 'derivative' are 'stupid critic' words for the aforesaid reasons. Having said all that, child and mentally ill artists have amazing power and, dare I say it, originality. Professional artists know this and shamelessly copy them.

  10. Pieces of art are instruments of perception. Taste, sample, riff, but don't gobble unless you can bring something new to the work.

  11. This reminds of why I enjoy the music genre 'vaporwave' lots, my friends just think I'm a bit of a loser/pretentious hipster that has taken a 'meme' too far, mainly because it is just slowed down music, (well it depends, some has more added to it than just some slowing down) but even as slowed down music there's something interesting to be said about it's re-contextualising of music from 'the past', which what copying is able to do

  12. There's no excuse for Richard Prince's crap. Quit acting like a sheep.

  13. How do you get away with copyright infringement and also the misrepesentation of a product logo and trademarked image?

  14. There seem to be a trend in the popular world to justify reusing old ideas, particularly in art and culture. Let's face it, when the goal is to make money, the best approach is to continue to do what works. New ideas are risky and most of the time doesn't make money. Copying as a tool to learn is different than copying because the artists is just unable to come up with new ideas.

  15. You lost me as soon as you threw in that "Cultural Marxist" Foucault. This guy has poisoned the American well, and those of us who know this are careful where we drink.

    A five year old can tell you that Picasso's guitar is not an actual copy of that African mask; that same five year old can tell you that Levine's work is a copy. I guess reading French Structuralists and Post-Moderns will take away your ability to see (better keep that five year old around).

    "So called Geniuses"? Come on, guys, I thought this was an art channel? Are you calling your own history a fraud? Why study it then? And if Levine is so unimpressed with Art history why is every work a reference to it?

  16. I really hate how much she butchers Spanish names but can pronounce European ones.

  17. I bet someone's gonna take advantage of this fact…and saying "I'm not copying!! it's Appropriation art"…

  18. I'm sure this has been said before, but the fact that the science philosopher Francis Bacon and the British modern artist Francis Bacon have not a thing in common is wild.

  19. I want to see someone do like an Artist/Philosopher video. I know in the Analytic Tradition Wittgenstein did Photography and Architecture after doing his Tractautus. Decades later Nelson Goodman did a contemporary dance work challenging the distinction between art and sport in Hockey: A Nightmare in 3 Periods and Sudden Death, after doing The Languages of Art and The Ways of Worldmaking. Nietzsche composed music that has been played by others in addition to constructing an new Zarathustra in Thus Spake Zarathustra.

  20. Fyi you say art critic Donald Crimp, but it’s Douglas Crimp as you can see at the bottom of the catalog essay.

    From the website
    Organized by critic Douglas Crimp, Pictures includes the work of Troy Brauntuch, Jack Goldstein, Sherrie Levine, Robert Longo, and Philip Smith. Their work represents the first look at important new developments in art thoroughly discussed in the catalog essay written by Douglas Crimp. The five artists in the exhibition share a common interest in the psychological manifestations of identifiable and highly connotative, though non-specific, imagery. Crimp has remarked in his text that “representation has returned in their work not in the familiar guise of realism, which seeks to resemble a prior existence, but as an autonomous function…It is the representation freed from the tyranny of the represented.”

  21. Don't mind me. Just here for a homework assignment. Gotta watch again cause it all just literally flew over my head.

  22. If you can't tell the difference between an original image being photographed, and an original image being done in a completely different style, then something is wrong with you.

  23. interesting to see how this video has aged since it's release, considering that Jay Z and Beyonce released a collaborative music video titled "ape sh**" almost bringing to life the exact concept of the dancing at the louvre piece by Faith Ringgold.

  24. Through this whole video I was thinking "meme culture meme culture meme culture." Especially Youtube poop. I'm not claiming that YTP is great art but that a lot of these great art examples seem to be visual or physical prototypes of the kind of meaningless absurd remixing that YTP survives on. I wasn't expecting the really good point about who, culturally, gets to be named vs who has to be anonymous!

  25. Couldn't finish watching the video she made me dizzy with her fast talking

  26. I really want to watch this video but there's an awful ticking element to the soundtrack that is really abrasive.

  27. I disagree with about 30-40% of what was said in this video, and you never came back to the conclude the point on the two identical photos at the start. Still food for thought I guess.

  28. I am thinking about and Appropriation Art and my mind is just whirling rn

  29. Nope, this video was a travesty. Everybody loves Roy Lichtenstein but few know who Russ Heath even was. He was the artist whose comics Liechtenstein stole from to make some of his most famous paintings. I get the "theoretical" case for copying, but what about the ethical case? Commercial artists, including comic book artists like Russ Heath, often struggled to make ends meet and (like Heath last August) died in obscurity, while a flat, soulless version of their work that somebody else got paid MILLIONS for hangs in the Tate Modern. The art that Pop Art appropriated may have been created with the intent of being mass produced, but the art itself is a unique object that came from some other artists' minds and labor, and respect should be paid to them.

    How about "The Case for Commercial Art", or "The Case for Sequential Art (Comics)"?

  30. I will thank you if you can share your sources. Great work by the way.

  31. i don't know if it's just me but so much was being mention, so many images appearing and like no time to digest what the last sentence was talking about

  32. That says it all ! A painter gets $10 for a picture, 20 years later it is resold for $1M .
    A person writes a song and expects the world to pay to listen for ever ?
    Not in my way of reasoning.

  33. this video was flagged for copyright infringement. all the money will now go to MGM

  34. Saying that works of ancient art are somehow oppressive of the people who created because they are unsigned or the artists are unknown is disingenuous–they were created in a time and a culture when artists did not sign their works, because their works were not objects of self-aggrandizement or individual expression, but were in most cases religious or ritual objects, and signing them would have been seen as blasphemous and an act of hubris.

    We don't know those artists because they didn't WANT to be known, NOT because of some vast "Western Supremacy Conspiracy"…

  35. I would have loved more discussion on the controversy surrounding these instances of copying eg. Prince's ig exhibition.
    ps. There is a missing caption on one of your images. It is a gallery photo from the Gottfried Lindauer exhibition "The Māori Portaits" held at Auckland Art Gallery – Toi o Tamaki in 2016/17.

  36. The extremely relevant backtrack in this video really got me….

  37. Sherrie Levine is a no-talent hack. She came up with a cheap gimmick and make a career out of it

  38. All art is fanart. Gotcha.
    However, it's a different subject when someone claims art they did not create as their own (AKA Sherrie Levine). That's just stealing. If you don't put the time and effort into copying something, then you don't deserve to claim it as your own interpretation of it. Simple as that.

  39. Standing on the shoulders of those who came before. It's how knowledge is created.

  40. I don’t copy. As a result when my art is viewed, it cannot be associated with anything ever seen before. It is original.

  41. Isn’t this video protecting plagiarism? When the line becomes blurry between originality and plagiarism, we shall recognize that we are in a cultural low tide. TAA feeds well for the mass. Very disappointing.

  42. Holy shit the concept used in 3:31 for the mgm intro and Wonder Woman are actually devices used in adult swim’s too many cooks

  43. Good artists copy . Punk ass corporate pukes steal to make a few quick bucks .

  44. I love this channel but the content sometimes is a bit too fast especially when there are loads of concepts to be digested. Maybe you could slow down a bit in future productions and allow people to speed up using the Youtube playback speed if needed.

  45. I’ve been thinking about this topic for a long time now. I’d like to read more about it. Do you have sources or books listed, which helped you for this video?

  46. I think it's unethical to copy someone else's work exactly or almost exactly and take credit for it. Plagiarism is wrong.

    However, I see absolutely nothing wrong with someone taking a photo or painting and using it as inspiration to make a "copy" of it is a completely different style that is distinguishable from the original. For instance, I see nothing wrong with someone painting or drawing something they copied from a reference photo; because paintings and drawings are so different than photos. I see nothing wrong using a painting as a reference to make a different version of the same painting.

    For instance, I see nothing wrong with taking the Steven McCurry painting called "Afghan girl" and painting it in hyperrealism style (because although it looks similar a different method and medium were used), or cubism style, or impressionism style. I wouldn't see a problem with someone sketching it, or making a stained glass version of it, or making a sculpture of it. I guess those would all be examples of "copying" the photo; but, they wouldn't really be examples of plagiarism.

    Actually, I think taking someone's art and reinterpreting it is the highest form of compliment the artist of the original piece can get. Every artist wants to inspire creativity in others.

    In my opinion, Sherry Levine plagiarized Walker Evans work. I don't really know how she copied his photos; but, it looks like Levine took Walker's photo of the woman, shown at the start of this video, and just photoshopped a little hair over the tiny thinning part she has on the left side of where her hair is parted. Other than that, the photo looks exactly the same.

    However, Velazquez, Bacon, and Picasso definitely didn't plagiarize the images they "copied;" they just used them as a jumping point and made them their own.

    Similarly, if someone does a cover of a song in the same style as the original, and they even try to impersonate the original singer by copying his voice, and then they tell people the song is their own, that's unethical. Yet, if a woman takes a heavy metal song, sang by a man, and turns it into a pop style song with a rap interlude, and changes the pace of the song a little, she isn't attempting to steal the singer's song, she is simply putting her own flare on a cover of that singer's song.

  47. Richard Prince is a plagiarizing fool who should have been in jail for literally taking a picture of someone else's photo! That guy is profiting of someone else's work and visual imagination!!!!

  48. I’ve officially seen every “the case for” episode. It’s my fave segment on this channel. Please keep ‘em coming!

  49. I enjoyed this but I wish it was done at about half speed. It went so fast it hardly seemed like she drew a breath. You need to be able to process the words you hear AND process the images you see at the same time.

  50. the academic tone of these videos really helps sell the death of art as progress

  51. Great Artists Steal ?
    Great Artists also stay in hiding unless they want both knee caps busted .

  52. This is why I think sampling is so important in music. It connects us to the past and creates threads of belonging.

  53. As a 70 year old artist and former catholic school kid, I have felt so guilty about how much of what I do is "copying". I chose, in the end, to follow the Tom Lehrer school of thought: "Plagiarize,
    Let no one else's work evade your eyes; Remember why the good Lord made your eyes; So don't shade your eyes; But plagiarize, plagiarize, plagiarize -; Only be sure always to call it please 'research' ".

  54. Copying art is art copied. Sadly contemporary conceptual “art” is as much garbage as the garbage they copy

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