In this forum, we were asked to debate and discuss the appropriation of Susan Meiselas’ “The Molotov Man” by the artist and painter Joy Garnett.

The photograph of Susan Meiselas, was appropriated and a section used as the inspiration for a painting by Joy Garnett, and you can read an article about it here.

I guess I am firmly in Joy’s camp.

For myself, the work I create (not commissioned work) is from myself and my archive. If someone used a piece of my work within their own art, I would mainly be interested to see what they did and understand more about why. And then seek to see if I can create new work from that.

I am not really considering the legal or copyright issue in my response. We are influenced by countless sources and inspirations, and probably those influences inform how and why we create the way we do. What I am interested here is in the journey of the original work and how the new work is created. If the new work is just commercially focused and a direct copy of the original work then that is a different matter.

PS. I have copyrighted my image :)

Fig. 1. Stubbs Hughes, T., Drawing by Tim Stubbs Hughes, 2020.