Arts & Entertainment News
Recent Newswire Stories from PRnetwire and eNewsChannels.com
Edited by Christopher Simmons, senior news editor
CAUGHT IN THE ACT - ART HEIST BY THE FOURTH LARGEST NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM 'AN INSIDE JOB,' CLAIMS ARTIST PETER ANTON
GUILFORD, CT - (Send2Press Newswire) - Oct. 28, 2003 -- Everyone has had
a great idea and had a boss or coworker steal it and get all the credit.
Throughout history artists have been vulnerable to having their ideas
and visions stolen by predators, too -- but the last thing an artist
expects is that the predator would be a museum. Artist Peter Anton says
he was "ripped off" by the fourth largest natural history museum in the
In June 2003, Peter Anton, well-known in the art world for his
super-scale Chocolate Box sculptures, started receiving congratulatory
phone calls from family members, friends and some of his collectors who
had seen a photograph of what they thought was his Chocolate Box
sculpture in The New York Times. When Anton saw the article, he was
shocked to see a remarkable copy of his Chocolate Box sculpture. It was
part of a story on the huge, popular and very profitable traveling show
entitled "Chocolate" at the American Museum of Natural History in New
York, which was organized by the Field Museum of Chicago.
Anton contacted a lawyer to inquire whether the museum had violated his
copyright. His attorney wrote a letter to the Field Museum informing
them that the artist's copyright had been violated, and outlined a
number of steps that needed to be taken to rectify the situation.
"This is a very important issue. All artists, writers and musicians are
vulnerable to being robbed of their ideas. All I wanted was an apology
and credit that the Chocolate Box featured in the exhibition was
inspired by me," said Anton. But, the museum and its attorney, Felisia
Wesson, responded with a letter expressing less than an amicable spirit
and an unwillingness to cooperate with the artist's request. Although
Anton's attorney assured him that he had substantial grounds to sue the
museum, he learned that the lengthy and complicated legal procedures
could cost several hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Anton also contacted each member of the Field Museum's Board of
Trustees-seventy very rich and powerful individuals who make up a who's
who of corporate America. Not one single person responded.
The likelihood that the Field Museum's replica Chocolate Box was
conceived and executed without familiarity of Anton's work is remote and
can hardly be considered a coincidence. In 1996, Anton had sent
photographs of his Chocolate Boxes to hundreds of museums and art
galleries across the country. One of the recipients of these
photographs was Sophia Siskel at the Museum of Contemporary Art in
Chicago, who later became the Director of Exhibitions at the Field
Although the Field Museum's attorney attempted to discredit the
artist by stating that "Mr. Anton's work has received a modicum of
publicity," in fact, Anton's Chocolate Boxes have been widely featured
in the press and broadcast media since the early 1990's, including
People Magazine, Lufthansa Magazine, The Washington Post, Reuters, The
New York Times, the New York Daily News, Food Arts, Restaurants USA, The
Caroline Rhea Show, The Food Network, and CNN Headline News. In
addition, full-page display ads featuring photographs of Mr. Anton's
sculptures have been advertised for many years in ARTnews, Frieze
Magazine, and Gallery Guide.
"It is so unfair that a museum, which is supposed to be in support of
art, artists, and culture, would copy my sculptures...and then, with
much arrogance, completely disregard me," said Anton. "Basically artists
have no recourse for copyright infringement because the legal expenses
are prohibitive, especially when you are up against a giant
multimillion-dollar business like the Field Museum."
In 2003, the Field Museum's "Chocolate" exhibition was also shown at the
Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History. It opened October 11,
2003 at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, and during the next three years
it will be presented at museums in Houston, Philadelphia, Gainesville,
FL, San Diego, San Francisco, Milwaukee, and Atlanta.
Source of News:
Peter Anton (Artist)
Connecticut Business Newswire
Arts and Entertainment Newswire
> Read original news release in raw text format
» E-mail This News Story to Someone
> More Arts and Entertainment News
More Connecticut Business News
> Other Recent News Stories
FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THE COMPANY OR ORGANIZATION(S) MENTIONED IN THE ABOVE NEWS ITEM, PLEASE CONTACT THE COMPANY DIRECTLY. SEND2PRESS/NEOTROPE IS NOT A REPRESENTATIVE OF, AND DOES NOT OFFER FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT, ANY COMPANY MENTIONED IN THE ABOVE NEWS ITEM.
DISCLAIMER: the above news article is believed accurate but not guaranteed, and is based on news supplied by the company or organization mentioned and/or quoted in the story. Neotrope/Send2Press makes no claims of accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Any opinions expressed by representatives of company(s) mentioned in news item are solely those of the person indicated, and do not reflect any opinion or policy of Neotrope/Send2Press. Your use of any information contained herein is done solely at your own risk, and you are fully responsible for using any information herein, or on sites mentioned or linked to in the article. Reproduction of this news article in any form requires written authorization use of the raw text version of the news has no restrictions other than you may not post our news on a website which offers either PR or newswire services, or Internet Promotion services.. You may freely link to this article. eNewsChannels (www.eNewsChannels.com) is a unit of Neotrope®. Keyword marketing technology by DotComMojo, a unit of Neotrope.