Value of Original Art


XCZ, the root of the originals having more value…well, there are a few reasons. It’s partly just superstition, as I think you agree. It’s also partly an extension of our feelings about famous people. People don’t really give a shit if they saw a look-a-like of a celebrity, but they get all excited to meet the real one. People get a rush out of knowing that they’re just feet away from something painted by hand by the real daVinci. It’s more about the legend/fame of the artist than it is about the art sometimes.

Also, when it comes to certain art media, it’s impossible to make replicas that even come close. Photography would be an example of a medium that’s very easy to replicate, and especially digital photography, as with digital you can simply just print more and they’ll all have the same quality as the original (as long as you don’t use jpg lol).

Sculptures are hard but not impossible to adequately replicate.

Paintings, though, are pretty much impossible to even get close. Paintings aren’t just flat images. Part of the appeal is the texture of the paint itself and the way the brush strokes are applied. It is said that a painter’s brush stroke is as unique as his fingerprints. So, just getting a photo of the Mona Lisa wouldn’t suffice as a replacement, as it lacks texture, and having someone paint another by hand would result in a significantly different picture (of course, if he was a good enough painter, only the enthusiasts would notice the differences…but then again, the Mona Lisa is plagued with aging, and I don’t think those effects are readily copied…unless you’re willing to wait a few centuries lol).

That’s the conclusion we reached in the other thread. People have a tendency to revere the original, but not the replica, but a question worth asking is if this is reason enough to overvalue the original as much as people normally do. I don’t think it is, because it’s not the artwork that’s being valued. It’s other things that ought not matter.

I saw a program on TV some time ago about a new gadget used to authenticate originals. What they do is make a profile of the original in terms of the brush strokes, layers of paint, etc. So you can make a painting that looks exactly like the original to the naked eye, but how you went about doing it will be different from the original painter. Picasso, if I remember correctly, was said to use very few brush strokes. He was a confident painter. My point is it with this kind of technology it isn’t impossible to replicate a painting, and my issue here is with people not looking and judging the artwork itself, but everything else surrounding it… the politics, the artist, it’s history, how much some other rich fuck is willing to pay for it, etc. That makes for shitty art. Burning down the louvre, by which i mean destroying originals would help to judge the of an art piece based on it’s artistic merit. I’m pretty sure if they discovered a never before seen painting of Picasso that’s total shit, something he did while he was tripping on something, it would still sell more than anything else out there and it would hang in a fancy gallery.