News Recap: October 19, 2018

A weekly update of art world news.  

Alice and the Fairies,  photograph of Frances 'Alice' Griffiths, (1907-1986), by Elsie Wright (1901-1988), July, 1917 via Dominic Winter Auctioneers

Alice and the Fairies, photograph of Frances 'Alice' Griffiths, (1907-1986), by Elsie Wright (1901-1988), July, 1917 via Dominic Winter Auctioneers

Cottingley Fairy Photographs Auctioned Off for Ten Times Estimated Value
Two photographs of the Cottingley Fairies, from the series that made Sir Arthur Conan Doyle a believer, were sent to auction last week through Dominic Winter Auctioneers and sold for £20,400, over ten times their estimated value. According to the auction house, each photograph was expected to land somewhere between £700 and £1,000, but international online interest skyrocketed the hammer price. Alice and the Fairies and Iris and the Gnome, photographed in 1917 by Elsie Wright and nine-year-old Frances Griffiths in the Cottingley village in Yorkshire, England, depicted young girls with fairies made out of paper and pins. They quickly became famous for fooling the public and inspiring spiritual debates. "While there was a lot of skepticism in the authenticity of the photographs at the time, the story never went away and Elsie and Frances only confessed that the photographs had been faked in 1983," said Chris Albury, senior auctioneer and valuer for Dominic Winter Auctioneers, "It just shows you that the story behind the Cottingley Fairies is still so attractive and important to so many people. One hundred years on, it remains a haunting story.”
Read the full story (CNN Style)

Clément Cogitore wins the 18th Prix Marcel Duchamp
Contemporary artist Clément Cogitore has won the 18th edition of the Prix Marcel Duchamp for his video installation, The Evil Eye (2018). The Evil Eye was created through the manipulation of hundreds of stock photographs purchased through Getty Images, narrating a woman’s life. “Stock images are made for manipulation but never for art, just for ads, political campaigns or business films. I thought of doing something different, experimenting with how these images talk about us as an archive of the present,” said Cogitore. The €35,000 award was announced on October 15th at the Centre Pompidou, Paris.
Read the full story (The Art Newspaper

Richard Prince Defends Appropriation
In two copyright cases against artist Richard Prince, the artist is defending appropriation. The works in question come from Prince’s New Portraits series and depict photographs by Donald Graham and Eric McNatt that were published on Instagram. Prince’s works add comments and take the digital physical as the photographs are printed on canvas. Now Prince must prove that his works’ appropriation is crucial to the artwork’s purpose in new summary judgement motions. The court is expected to evaluate many factors, including the market value of the appropriated works and the transformative nature of Prince’s work. In defense of Prince, art dealer Daniel Wolf says the meaning in Prince’s works “is not in the photograph; the meaning is in the Instagram.” Conversely, June Besek, executive director of the Kernochan Center for Law, Media and the Arts at Columbia Law School, reflected on the ramifications of the upcoming court ruling and concluded that if the Instagram interface with comments and emojis creates new expression, copyright protection for any work posted to social media “would be significantly compromised.”
Read the full story (The Art Newspaper)