See the link at the bottom of this post for an interesting story about Gilbert Stuart's George Washington.
You've probably become aware of (or even been contacted by) copyists companies who take images of paintings, recreate them and sell them as original works of art without your permission. Some of them are so bold that they've even sold the paintings on e-bay. Last year, I saw an "Originals Oil Painting of Tony Ryder" offered on-line by a seller in China for around $300 which was clearly a copy of one of Ryder's well known paintings. Hilarious!
This summer, some painting peers and I were contacted simultaneously by a group in China requesting high resolution digital images of our work and posing as buyers. At the time, I thought this phenomenon of "chinese copyists" was fairly new ... possibly in the last 20-40 years. I also assumed it was just random chance that the group contacting us was from China and because copying happens all over the world. The article below (sent by Walter Ratliff) shed new light on other possible issues associated with unapproved copying.
Check out this article above in ArtNews Magazine about copies of Gilbert Stuart's George Washington.