The Art Industrial Complex

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Dogs playing poker.  Van Gogh’s Sunflowers.  I don’t care which cliche of an oil painting you want to pick, but you can probably buy a knock-off at your local shopping mall or somewhere similar.  However, did you ever wonder where these all come from?

It turns out that 60% of all the world’s knock-off oil paintings comes from one place in China: Dafen Village in Shenzhen.  According to the Google (that bastion of knowledge), it looks like there are about 8,000 painters and 1,000 galleries.  In fact, the streets are literally swarming with painters:

However, hopefully the quality of the local art will now improve, as they’ve built a beautiful new art gallery there (pictured above).

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