I am the owner of Dig Dug?s.
I was reading over everything in Truss' How Would You Feel posting and would just like to share my point of view on this matterl. After you read this, if you still want to torch me, please feel free.
Joel hasn?t exactly told you the whole story on this.
Rather than contacting Dig Dug?s directly, Joel emailed one of the artists at our gallery who forwarded Joel?s email along to me.
Also, Joel emailed the gallery using a fake name (Neil Sacker) attempting to trick us into giving out Brian Taylor?s personal info.
I tend not to be one to over-react to situations. So, when I first heard about this, my reply was indeed to say that Brian showed this stuff at a one-night only gallery show and the stuff came and went with the artist that night.
I did say that Brian was a legitimate artist, which he is. He had original paintings at the same show that had absolutely nothing to do with anything we are discussing here. His chosing to steal other people?s work is not legitimate, but he is a talented artist otherwise. I tried to explain that I don?t really think Brian thought about what he was doing nor meant any intentional harm by it. There was no master plan on his part to steal the works of other artists and become super-rich in the process.
As I am not emotionally connected to the subject matter, I can certainly understand how someone could think that I was defending the artist?s actions rather than the artist as a human being.
Anyway, when Joel and I finally started talking to each other directly about this matter, both of our point of views were made clear via email. The emails are below. Please read them over.
If you still want to yell and scream, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
In a message dated 10/24/2004 1:45:13 PM Eastern Standard Time, joeltrussell@xxxxxxxxx writes:
I'm very saddened to hear your response about the appropriated images. It's
one thing to take commercial pop images that have saturated our everyday
lives and place them on merchandise for sale (which is legally shady as
well, but I actually could care less.) It's another thing to take an image
of another artist and place it on an item for SELL and the original artist
sees NO MONEY NO CREDIT OR NO NOTIFICATION for the transaction. That is
thievery simple and plain. Are people buying the purse because it's a neat
process or do they like the image? I think you know the answer here.
Anyhow, you think I'm not a starving artist too? You think I didn't wait
tables? Did I take Chris Reccardi images and plaster them on lunchboxes to
make an extra buck? No.
In short, if you're a gallery of any integrity you'll at least have any
items that have my images on them for sell removed immediately. If I were a
gallery owner and found out about this practice, I would not invite that
artist to be a participant in any events. I have a feeling you guys are
close though, so whatever.
Have Brian contact me at XXXXXXXX immediately. I'd love to make sure
that he doesn't have more of my images for sell on other merchandise.
I think some of the people that are hanging in your gallery would be
outraged by having their images unpermittedly plastered on merchandise for
sell. Especially when they receive not only no money, but no credit.
PS "He is totally legit." ... le?git?i?mate adj. Being in compliance with
the law; lawful: a legitimate business.
No he's completely not.
You know what, Joel, this was a one-night event that was 6 weeks ago and all of the remaining purses except for a few left the store when the event was over.
However, my reply to your email forwarded by Eric was in the manner in which I would reply to any such unknown person complaining about an artist that has hung in my space. Did you expect me to express complete and utter disdain about this event to someone who is a complete and utter stranger to me? Did you expect me to just throw another human being under a bus because you are unhappy? I would never do that to anyone. Imagine if you did a show in my gallery and 6 weeks later someone came to me ranting and raving about you. Would you expect me to suddenly show up at your home carrying torches and pitchforks? Let's be reasonable, here.
Of course, I am terribly sorry that your image was stolen for use as a one-off purse.
We try to help local artists out. Just as we would try to help you out if you lived in Charlotte. We certainly do not give everyone the third degree about their work. Most of the images on the purses are iconic in nature. We didn't ask him for a complete listing of all of the images and for art clearances before we allowed him to do a four hour showing. We would never request that of anyone.
That particular purse did not sell and went home with Brian. I will inform him that you are unhappy about it and request that he destroy it and think twice before lifting anyone else's imagery.
How I further handle this matter with Brian is frankly none of your business. I will tell you that we are not planning to work with him on anything in the future, but that is a decision that was made long before you ever contacted us and is based on many other criteria other than your outrage.
Please make sure to say hi to Neil Sacker.