Texas Tech University

Richard Prince Sold Strangers' Instagram Photos For $90k -- And It's Probably Legal

Huffington Post

July 1, 2015

Huffington Post - Imagine waking up one morning to discover an acclaimed artist has made an artwork out of your Instagram photo. He blew the image up, added a snarky caption, and placed it alongside 37 other ‘Instas’ in one of the world’s foremost galleries. How would you feel? Flattered? Perturbed? Enraged?

These decisions, however, are far from carved in stone. If the past few years are any indication, our idea of "transformation" will continue to radically evolve. Texas Tech University Professor Darren Hick, who specializes in aesthetics, ethics and metaphysics, added, "There has been a shift in fair use decisions over the past few decades towards favoring artistic borrowings that serve to 'transform' the original, but there has been no consensus on what constitutes such transformation. There is really no way to predict how the next such case will go -- fair use decisions don't set precedents."

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