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Chinese artists create counterfeit stock images of artists

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Stock Photos are glorious things. Yes, they're an important tool for sites such as our own, but they're also, perhaps more often than not, unintentionally hilarious. Services like Thinkstock, Shutterstock and Getty Images have birthed fantastic Tumblrs and Twitter accounts like StockFinds, Completely Unusable Stock Photos, and the somewhat-NSFW Porncomnents. They're solidly embedded in internet culture, and they're now also the inspiration behind A Contemporary Portrait of the Internet Artist, a collection of hand-painted copies of stock images of artists created by "underpaid Chinese painters."

The artworks are essentially counterfeits of Getty Images, and in an accompanying press release the team behind the project -- the IOCOSE collective -- explains the methodology by which they were created will be naturally replicated. "The digital images of the portraits will circulate online, be copied, posted and tweeted by journalists and bloggers. The portraits might be bought and become private property, but also continue being exhibited and photographed." IOCOSE's copyright-skirting sourcing of these images, and their intent for them to be replicated, is conceived as a subversive commentary on exploitation, outsourcing, and copyright issues surrounding modern creative industries. You can see the collection below, and if you're intrigued as to what the originals look like, you can follow the link in each image.

Gallery: A Contemporary Portrait of the Internet Artist | 6 Photos

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