The Blurry Thing

by Mario Santamaría

1/10/20 to 15/10/20 at SWAB

The images in our booth have been intentionally blurred. Neither the artist, Mario Santamaría, nor Dilalica have the reproduction rights of the original works of art that are part of the artworks presented. The collector who acquires them will be able to see them without the blur, but will also agree to not reproduce them publicly.

The Blurry Thing is a photographic series about the digitalization of art spaces, the policies of image reproduction, and the rights of the one who is watching. The six pieces presented in the booth are screenshots captured inside the platform Google Art Institute in virtual tours of several museums. The focus is on pieces that have been blurred from the virtual tour, due to copyright issues, but because of a human mistake can be partially seen from certain angles. The artist has screenshot that error, which ultimately makes the artwork visible. Even though we have the sharp image, we don’t have the right to publicly display it. Article 18 of the Intellectual Property Law in Spain stipulates, “We understand reproduction as the direct or indirect fixation, provisional or permanent, in any medium or form, of any work or part of it, that allows its communication or duplication. Therefore, the collector, who would buy the printed image without blur, would also agree that if the work was to be documented or publicly displayed, a blur previously indicated by the artist needs to be applied to the work.