Monday, March 1, 2010


I'm still hashing over this idea of originality and authenticity.

Originality.....At what point does the piece that inspired you....become yours. wasn't yours to start with....after you've changed it 10%... 25%... 50%??

Marcel Duchamp took the Mona Lisa....put a mustache and goatee on her and gave it the title L.H.O.O.Q. (a reference to ML having a "fire down below") and created a piece that is used in law schools as an example of a derivative work. Not a copy...but a work consisting of modifications which, as a whole, represent an original work of authorship.

The changes were minor. The transformation of the original from an iconic piece of artwork into a parody (and incensing the entire popultion of France) is what made it a derivative work and an original in it's own sense.

Using the photo in the previous post as inspiration, I've transformed it into the images below. Are they transformed enough to be considered derivative or original? Whose to say? Not me.

Authenticity...if authenticity as defined by Jim Jarmusch is something that speaks to the soul, then they are authentic. And being authentic is good thing.


Katie said...

I would say they are authentic - authentically Gail. This type of design makes me think of your work and to me, that would make them authentic to you.

Anonymous said...

always a tricky subject. with so many jewelry designers, i'm always afraid of someday being accused of stealing a design.
i just made some earrings the other day and hadn't seen anyone use these beads. then lo and behold, someone has the same beads in the same configuration but in a necklace. so now i don't know if i should put them in my etsy shop. blah

Gail said... those earrings to Etsy. If you don't, you are holding back your creativity. Two people coming up with the same independant thought...or in this case design...happens all the time. It doesn't mean that yours isn't original...just means your design sense is simliar to someone elses.