Obama Asks Artists for Freebies, Gets Blasted by Guild

Thursday, 20 Oct 2011 01:00 PM

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President Barack Obama is asking artists around the country to support his 2012 campaign by creating original work that bolsters his jobs plan, but he’s not willing to pay them for it.

That does not sit well with the Graphic Artists Guild, which expressed its dismay in an open letter that blasts the president’s “shameful” contest, reports DailyCaller.com.

“American artists should be outraged that our president does not recognize that we are entitled to be paid for our work, as are all Americans,” the letter reads, in part.

Obama’s “Art Works” competition asks for submissions of posters “illustrating why we support President Obama’s plan to create jobs now, and why we’ll re-elect him to continue fighting for jobs for the next four years.”

Only the top three selected artists will be rewarded for their efforts, though they will not receive a piece of the president’s $61 million campaign coffer. Instead, they’ll receive a signed copy of their own work of art.

A signed Obama piece would fetch around $195, said the guild, while the market price for the work would earn an artist around $4,000.

“To add insult to injury,” the guild’s letter continues, “the contest rules state that all artists who submit work to the contest grant the Obama for America campaign an unrestricted unpaid irrevocable license to use ALL of the submissions, not just the winning entry.”

Proceeds from sales of winning submissions go to the campaign fund.

The Obama camp had not responded to the open letter as of Wednesday.

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