Thursday, January 22, 2015

Start your own Provenance, sharing into the future

Me enjoying an espresso (short black) coffeeSocial media is often prompted as a way an artist can reach a larger audience. This is really only partly true. Just putting works on line doesn’t mean others will look at them.  For a start it will probably just be a tiny thumbnail to most until they click on it, if they click on it. Further in a time where almost everyone has access to the net, via smartphone, tablet or computer and their own web presence, via a social media service. Everything quickly gets swamped by a plethora of other distractions. Many of those distractions will be striking similar because the web is full of copy cats and people who “wanna bee” celebrities.  They either are ignorant of, or just wish to remain ignorant of, intellectual property rights and ownership, they are just chasing likes, views and +1s. If your work is original, you may not want it devalued by lots of “clones” or just simply having it “stolen” and reposted without attribution. Well maybe you don’t actually need to post it, just about it.

Establishing provenance (the chain of ownership) for art works is an important historical undertaking. It helps detect and eliminated forgeries (unless the forger can also “plant” an elaborate chain of fake histories) and it is fundamental in establishing the value of the work. It is not possible for you to write the provenance but things you do, write about, sketch and/or photograph will form the foundation of this future value. Posting about your current work, including sketches and photos of you working on it and/or others in front of the work (say at an exhibition) are probably better ways to use social media to promote your art than just posting a thumbnail of it.

My Painting "The Short Black"

The Short Black was painted in 2013, as a donation to the Art Auction at Alphington Primary School

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