American actress and model, Emily Ratajkowski, has come up with an ingenious new way to reclaim her ownership over an Instagram photo of herself, a photo which she claims artist Richard Prince appropriated for his “New Portraits” series.
The image, now available to buy as an NFT, is a digital composite showing the model in her New York apartment standing in front of Richard Prince’s “Instagram painting” of herself that hangs in her Los Angeles home.
Christie’s will be auctioning off Ratajkowski’s “Buying Myself Back” on May 14th at their Post War and Contemporary Art Day Sale. It seems Christie’s auction house has become an avid supporter of NFTs and is not leaving the scene anytime soon. You can follow the auction here.
Ratajkowski believes that women should be able to share their likeness and image in the digital world without being exploited, and that NFTs can be used as a medium to control and own the usage of their image on the internet.
Using the newly introduced medium of NFTs, I hope to symbolically set a precedent for women and ownership online, one that allows for women to have ongoing authority over their image and to receive rightful compensation for its usage and distribution.
— Emily Ratajkowski (@emrata) April 23, 2021
She was warned by cryptocurrency experts that “People are going to use your image in NFTs in one way or another, so you might as well make one.”, and whilst the debate over copyright on NFTs is still the elephant in the room within the industry, the model decided to take the plunge and do it herself. Certainly a smart move on Ratajkowski’s side.
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