The Smoker's Case by Miriam McClung
Miriam McClung's pastel on paper copy of Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin's oil painting "The Smoker's Case" done in 1737 hanging in the Louvre Museum in Paris, France.

What do Miriam McClung and Andy Warhol Have in Common?

If you are on this newsletter list, you probably want to know more about Miriam and her art.

And you probably like art in general. What you probably don’t like is reading about Supreme Court case rulings, regardless of your political leaning.

We’re betting that, like us, you’ll find the recent Supreme Court ruling of Andy Warhol Foundation v. Goldsmith pretty fascinating and applicable to your art interest and Miriam’s art. There is a very informative and entertaining podcast to listen to on The Daily to get you quickly up to speed:

Andy Warhol, like most artists, borrow from and build on the work of other artists. Warhol “borrowed” the images of celebrities by photographers like Goldsmith and made art different from the original. See this Warhol piece of Marilyn Monroe and for the case cited above, his art of the rock star Prince.

When the art created by the second artist’s work is different enough in visual representation and meaning, the new work is protected by copyright law. That’s what the Andy Warhol Foundation argued was true for his Prince piece and many others like his. However if the new work is deemed not different enough from the original, then there is a copyright infringement, and the original artist, like Goldsmith, should be compensated.

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the original photographer (Goldsmith) and against the Warhol Foundation. It said Warhol was not entitled to draw on the photo of Prince by Goldsmith and resell it in the same market space where Goldsmith’s photos could also be sold. Goldsmith’s photo was not “fair use” and thus a copyright violation by the Warhol Foundation.

Now you may be asking, what does all this have to do with Miriam’s art?

When Miriam has copied the work of a famous but deceased artist like the one at the top of this email or the work below, the copied work is always referenced, in the public domain, and, thus, is not subject to copyright protection. She has done several works like this for clients through the years, and they will never have to worry about copyright infringement!

Copy of Eugene Delacroix's work, "Orphan Girl at the Cemetery" by Miriam McClung, 1962. Oil on canvas. 1962. 32" x 24".
Copy of Eugene Delacroix’s work, “Orphan Girl at the Cemetery” by Miriam McClung, 1962. Oil on canvas. 1962. 32″ x 24″.

While Miriam’s art draws heavily from established artistic styles, painters, traditions, and techniques, her work is wholly original. And that is good news for you, a collector. You will not have to worry down the road about the piece of Miriam’s art you are purchasing running afoul of copyright laws.

We are continually updating the record of each of Miriam’s original art pieces to include images, size, history, sales, condition, pricing information, and provenance. This increases the value of the work you own — knowing where it came from and how it fits into her career and collection — and will protect you from copyright claims by other artists or entities.

We also provide with every original piece an Artist Reserved Right and Transfer Agreement that we both sign. It clearly defines the sale, copyright, access, and transfer of each original work. Again, this documentation helps you and your heirs determine the value and history of the art over generations.

If you ever have questions about a piece, its history, or copyright questions for using Miriam’s work, please ask. We do on occasion grant requests to use an image of her art for special not-for-profit projects. And we also license images for commercial use on a case-by-case basis. Again, just ask us!

Thanks for your support,

Frank & Miriam