Gordon Duggan : Does Copyright Serve or Fail the Canadian Artist?

Master Class

Thursday May 10 2012, 1pm-5pm

Project Description

A half-day master class led by artist, designer and art advocate Gordon Duggan, Founder of the Appropriation Art Coalition.

This master class revolves around two questions; Does copyright help or hinder artists working in Canada today? How will the situation change with new copyright legislation? Organizations such as CARFAC and RAAV have played important roles in advocating for artists and ensuring compensation for their work. However, recent critics including the Appropriation Art Coalition, have adopted different positions on the issue of copyright. They point out that strong copyright law leads to censorship, restrictive notions of artistic ownership, and creates divisions between makers and consumers of culture. With Bill C11 about to be passed in Parliament, it is critical that artists become conversant with the key issues.

Skol seeks input from contemporary artists and arts organizations in order to address issues surrounding copyright, appropriation and artistic labour. This master class will bring together a diverse group of individuals in order to share stories, opinions and thoughts on these topics. This includes artists who have experienced copyright issues with their work, artists who have appropriated work from copyrighted sources, and art workers negotiating copyright in the setting of a gallery or artist-run-centre. The goals are to focus on copyright issues as they relate to Canadian artists; to discuss alternatives to copyright, such as Creative Commons licenses; and to brainstorm other practical changes or responses that could be implemented among institutions, or among provincial or federal organizations.

Mr. Duggan will begin the Master Class with a media presentation discussing the increasing rift between artistic practice and legislation. He will discuss the importance of the public domain, the ramifications of term extensions, digital locks, moral rights and the impact Bill C-11 will have on artistic practice. This will be followed by a talk and case studies. The session will conclude with a period of informal discussion on related topics.

This professional development activity was developed by research assistant Noni Brynjolson during the winter of 2012, and coincides with the International Digital Arts Biennial.