Copycat artist ruffles feathers with blatant rip-off


Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but is this taking it too far? The photograph on the top right, titled Shenae and Jade, is by Sydney’s award-winning artist Petrina Hicks and held in the collection of the Art Gallery of NSW.

The other below it is a painting by the prolific Czech artist Marek Hospodarsky and titled, perhaps less imaginatively, Bird. The hairline is similar, so too the pose and light. There is even the same little cutaway in the neckline of the antique lace top.

Sydney art dealer David Hulme found it hard to spot the difference when he received a promotional email from art dealers Saatchi Online.

The price of the painting by Hospodarsky is $1200 – or you can get a print for just $20.

Hulme, of Banziger Hulme Fine Art, in Manly, said the image was an ”iconic photographic image”. ”I compared the two and it’s obvious that it’s a copy,” he said. ”The main problem is the way it is being proliferated to such a substantial amount of people around the world.”

He rated the work as ”quite an amateurish representation of Petrina’s very highly professional work” and said it could damage the artist ”because it is not of anywhere near the same quality”.

Read the article here: Sun_Herald_080712.pdf

Written by

Brigitte Banziger

Hello, my name is Brigitte Banziger and I am an art consultant and manager at Banziger Hulme Fine Art Consultants, Australia's art valuation and art advice experts. We offer comprehensive art valuation and art brokerage services (selling and buying art on behalf of clients). Our art services cover everything from valuations, art care and restoration, to general advice such as helping define the goals for your art purchase and work out the best strategy on how to achieve those goals, including where, how and and when to buy.

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