Monday, August 07, 2017

© Hazel Dooney

At the back of Menzies' printed catalogue for their forthcoming Australian & International Fine Art & Sculpture auction, on 10 August, is a page noting the copyright of artworks. I am the only artist credited by my name alone – one of my conditions for granting copyright permission.

I have always preferred to handle my own copyright and licensing. I don't want someone else making these decisions for me, especially without my knowledge. I want to know when and where my work is reproduced and assess each copyright permission individually. When it comes to auction catalogues, this approach allows me to ensure details such as the title and media are correct and, if necessary, address any issues regarding provenance long before a work is publicly offered for sale. It is also a protective measure against art fraud. It's important that information in auction catalogues is correct because they create a public record of the title, media and provenance of an artwork. To me, handling my own copyright is logical because I have the most information about my artwork. It is also logical that I am credited using my name alone.

I'm intrigued that I seem to be the only artist who takes this approach. Though I notice some of the artists' estates (entities which, among other things, manage an artist's copyright after they're dead) do the same.

Above: Page 216 of Menzies' print catalogue for their auction titled Australian & International Fine Art & Sculpture 10 August 2017. Highlight added. Please click image to view larger version. 

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