Censored Art From Google’s Art Project as Abstract IRL Paintings

June 4, 2013 | Kyle Chayka

London-based artist Phil Thompson’s ongoing project Copyrights– one that is largely based on the Google Art Project’s interior views of museums, and the hazy, blurred out paintings that accompany these images as a result of complicated copyright issues surrounding some of the works. Some of the paintings in virtual walkthrough of the museums are blurred out because they are not actually owned by the institution or are protected a kind of copyright law that restricts reproduction of the images in any form. The artist has had the art-blurs reproduced in the well-known Dafen Oil Painting Village in Shenzen, China, a small town in which “painter-workers” have been selling numerous reproductions of iconic artworks on the cheap for several years.

The artist’s selection of this village was no mistake as it was chosen specifically because of China’s recent copyright difficulties with Google and internet censorship as whole, issues that persists to this day. Phil Thompson is also represented by Xpo Gallery in Paris.

(Images: Phil Thompson