Tuesday, 10 July 2012

"Banksy conmen sentenced"

"Lee Parker, 45, from Eastbourne, East Sussex, and Grant Champkins-Howard, 44, from Croydon, south London, faced charges of conspiracy to defraud.
Kingston Crown Court heard the men sold copies of genuine numbered prints on the internet shopping site eBay.
Judge Suzan Matthews handed the pair 12-month suspended sentences.
She said: "Neither of you should be under any illusion that I regard both of you as nothing more than a pair of old-fashioned conmen.You saw a way, and exploited a way, of making a quick and easy profit.""
 BBC News

Suspicions we're raised on the internet by a collector, as these two claimed each  print to be the genuine article - something which could raise millions and be sold in an art auction, not the popular bidding site eBay. In 2006, a print of Banksy's painting of Kate Moss in the style of Andy Warhols idols screen prints, sold for £57,600 at a Sotheby's auction.

Becoming an artist and beginning the journey and arduous task of selling your own artwork has it's own worries- deciding the cost of just a card can be a confusing time. Then there's the concern of copy right and, once becoming renowned for your work, people 'stealing' your ideas. Being a guerilla artist however, you're forever facing these issue's head on which play a part in the art work. Banksy being a graffiti artist at heart has always raised debates about whether graffiti is actually art or not (I could go on forever here, I've written essay upon essay on the issue) - but now he has exhibitions in famous galleries and con men trying to make a quick penny off the back of his success. Any artist that decides to sell their work, whether in the form of a small print, card or badge, or as original art works in an exhibition, find the rush and drive of finally calling their form of art a career, a rush in itself.
If you paint a lovely portrait for your nan and she likes it, you sell out your first 5 cards or you have people actually turn up to an exhibition you've curated then you're a success. Just enjoy the journey art takes you on, no matter what the medium, because you never know where you're going to end up - look at Banksy!

Being an artist is hard.

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