FROM BOO HOO TO BROUHAHA

(Related to this post http://hedcuts.blogspot.com/2009/10/jose-maria-cano-is-con-artist-he-uses.html )

A wild ride to say the least.
I don't know what if anything will come out of this case, or if we'll ever hear from Mr. Cano himself, but I'm glad I raised the question and exposed yet another form of artistic manipulation. In fine art world, you might say it's nothing new, but it's a unique case taking in consideration all aspects and players.
Again, I have no legal claim to my artwork in this case, but I DO hold the moral ownership, which is why I'm talking about it. I'm absolutely humbled by how many of you are able to view this from my perspective and I thank you very much for your emails and comments. Looks like I made some valuable friendships out of this whole thing, and that makes me a winner already!

The naysayers don't phase me a bit. My art speaks for itself, end of story. I make a decent living because I take great satisfaction in what I do and never for a moment have I taken my job for granted. I've been perfecting my own style within the technique, for over 20 years. I regularly have more work than I can handle and my numerous clients can attest to that so no, I don't need more publicity. But, the point in this case is not whether you like me as a person or not, or whether you like my drawings or not. If that's all you're going to talk about, you're completely missing the point. And, the point is:

How closely does Mr. Cano's Obama resemble an illustration of mine?

He has cleverly made "series" of these paintings which he displays as a group in his solo exhibitions, like the one named "The Wall Street 100" (Funny, how all of you who claim that he credited the Journal in the title, failed to notice that the title has no "Journal" in it!!) there are series named "Welcome to Capitalism", "China Ten" etc. Now take one of the pieces out of this context, and place it in a group PORTRAIT show, for example:
http://www.21cmuseum.org/museum/exhibits/identity-street.aspx
I find this particularly upsetting.

Once more, I'm getting nothing out of this affair, especially not money, but would you like to know how much these pieces are going for? Check this tidbit out. It involves another of my drawings, that of Queen Elizabeth II
http://www.artdaily.org/index.asp?int_sec=2&int_new=33971
http://oneartworld.com/artists/J/Jos_E9-mar_EDa+Cano.html

As one commentator pointed out, the fact that many of you are so divided on this issue, just proves there could be some wrongdoing involved. Too bad we might never find out.

17 comments:

What A Lame Excuse said...

I wouldn't ever be able to sleep easy at night if I knew people were manipulating, profiting, or stealing my creative content. I think I'd go bonkers.

Dan Jaboor said...

I'm wondering if, since your work is based off of photos, the owners of the copyright on the photo would have any grounds for legal action. Obviously the WSJ obtained permission for their use of the image, something I doubt this guy bothered to do. Should be interesting to see what comes of this.

Noli said...

Thanks Dan! You're a smart thinker!

manos symeonakis said...

you should defenetely not miss "the informant" movie ; )

FloMc said...

If an exact image of a copyrighted photo is used without permission, then that would give grounds for legal action. For instance, if I sit and paint, sketch, etc., any image, then it is art. But Cano's image IS a copy of your work. Lighter in hue, perhaps, but all the dots 'line up'. I felt the same when one of my form designs was used intercompany by another division, but my work belonged to the company, so... But I guess the Journal is not concerned about possible copyright infringement? Hmmm...

Noli said...

Flo, that's exactly right. It's like copying a painting down to artist's unique brushstrokes.
Again, I can only cry about it and let the public discuss. A lot of people are outraged just like me, so I'm glad to shed some light on the whole thing.

I have nothing to declare but my genius said...

Having read about your situation I have only sympathy for you, for somebody else to be gaining that much credit without so much as an acknowledgement is a disgrace. I understand the people saying you should be proud that in effect it is your work that people love, and so you should, BUT you should still feel greatly aggrieved. My heart goes out to you.

Drew said...

Unfortunately, it's always about who has the better lawyers. And how much your willing to spend usually decides who gets the recognition.

Niko said...

I realy like your work, continue this way.
www.depannage-informatique-toulouse.com

Paula said...

What a weird and awful way to gain recognition as an artist. Worse still, that people take him seriously. For some reason I keep thinking that this is something that Boing Boing could sink its teeth into, they have a pretty clear eye about copyrighting issues - at least from what I recall in my past readings. I did a search and they haven't listed you for a couple of years so maybe it's time for an upgrade?

Mike Lorrey said...

Hi Noli, I think this is atrocious what Cano is doing. I would suggest that if there are any such drawings you've done which the WSJ has NOT bought from you or otherwise bought the rights to, that you post them up here on this blog. Maybe Cano will steal them, and since you still would own the rights to these ones, you would then have standing to sue him directly without getting the WSJ involved. Make sure you have a jury trial and that you detail all the WSJ hedcuts that he stole previously which promted you to sting him here (btw you should delete this comment once you read it if you intend to follow through with it). A jury will award you for all work stolen, even that which the WSJ owns, most likely.

Noli said...

Mike L., I agree, but there's no need for Cano to use any of my non Journal stuff when there's plenty of "free" art for him to pick from the newsstands. That said, he's being closely watched.

Rachel Keele said...

i took a few classes in media law and ethics recently, and i don't know how there could be any room for uncertainty. he obviously stole your work. i would be pretty embarrassed if i were him.

James Sexsmith. said...

Taken from the sotherby's auction Catalogue:
In a moment where nearly no artist draws, Cano turns this discipline into the sign of identity of his
work: black outline on white background. With ink on paper or with encaustic on canvas, his
craftmanship is impeccable and the effects spectacular."
(Cristina Giménez, 'José-María Cano', in: Architectural Digest, no. 39, Madrid, September 2009,
p. 152)

You need to expand your efforts to get this resolved and at least stop his practice of 'working'.

Nicole Tattersall said...

This is worth posting on You Thought You We Wouldn't Notice http://www.youthoughtwewouldntnotice.com/

macdanzigphotography said...

unfortunately, the only thing I can do is offer to find and punch this guy in the face for you and all the other artists he stole from... I know, it's not a means to an end, but it might be somewhat satisfying...

:-/

Katherine Schweitzer said...

This is every artists worst nightmare. I cannot believe the amount of money I just saw attached to YOUR work. I know, it's not about money. But still!! How can Cano sleep at night with such dirty money? Have you contacted the gallery personally? I'm sure they just love the controversy. It's sickening.