PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Caddelle
 
Comments: 2
Article views: 3
 
 
Latest Badges:



 
View all Caddelle's badges.
 

Is our heritage being stolen?

13 March 2012, 07:11

An open letter to the Ministers of Trade and Industry and Arts and Culture.

We have seen the textile and clothing industry totally decimated by cheap clothing imports from China.  I can understand that this is a product of mass produced items which are price sensitive and the volumes required to service a nation are massive, so it was a given that competition would be hard.  Manufacturing in all spheres has dropped but now the Chinese have been for a while, muscling into a new area that is effecting many small businesses and artists all over the globe and now especially in South Africa.

Artists in any country represent and reflect a nation. The works produced are part of the national heritage.  In the past few months more than 20 galleries have closed their doors just in the Johannesburg region alone.  But what we have seen is, shops and galleries and I say gallery in the loosest term possible bringing container loads of mass produced copied pictures and selling them at prices that local artists cannot even compete with.  Material costs are more than finished Chinese pictures.  I cannot call them artworks because they are done on a mass scale. 

I have received emails from Chinese companies offering to reproduce any picture you send them.  There are certain so called galleries and individuals in Gauteng that have done just that.  They go into true galleries and take a cell phone picture send it off to China and then get back oil painted pictures resembling a style of a local artist.  The original artist now cannot even compete.   

To give you an idea of Chinese art production, I had recently read a couple of articles in the de Spiegel and New York Times.  These studios are likened to sweatshops. A painter can produce anywhere up to 30 pictures per day. There are 10 000 of these copy painters producing pictures in a single region of Southern China.  The average painter earns approximately R3.00 per picture copied.  That works out to be a whopping R90.00 per day. 

These copies are then sold at less than R100.00 per picture depending on quantities ordered.  They are landing in South Africa for less than our raw material costs.

According to a New York Times article Artist groups are questioning whether these works infringe on copyright laws.  Wal-Mart has opted not to stock Chinese work for this reason.  I sincerely hope Wal-Mart continues this practice in the South African market. 

I realise that this is a complex issue and how do we regulate this market.  We can try educating the population but this is an almost impossible job as price still plays a factor and how does the average person tell the difference between fake and real South African art.  One of the ways is that each gallery holds a CV of the artist and one can reference the artist.  This is a problem for the side of the road young black artists whose work cannot be referenced.  Do we name and shame businesses that import this fake art in the hope that people reject these pictures.  The likelihood is that will also not work.  Tourists come here and purchase what they think is local art but was actually produced in China. 

I feel that imported Chinese mass produced fake pictures is in anti competitive practice that needs to be reviewed and taxed to come into line with local cost structures.  Legislation is what is required.    Our artists and businesses are being affected and we need to act now to prevent what happened to our clothing and textile industry.

Your support would be greatly appreciated.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

 

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
2 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Nicholas K Mashabela
Are you a corrupter or a corrupte...

Many of our people, desperate to acquire drivers’ licenses, have for many years, found themselves being corrupted by traffic officials at driving schools.  Read more...

0 comments 782 views
Submitted by
Linda De Rooster
Children losing out

I am an Educational Psychologist who does a lot of psycho-educational assessments with children with special needs.  Read more...

0 comments 165 views
Submitted by
Sindiswa Ramokgata
Voters: Mindless Sheep?

In this godforsaken country of ours, one can only shake one’s head at the naivety of the mindless masses (MMS’s) who make up the vast majority of voters. Read more...

0 comments 439 views
Submitted by
Martin Albert
The decision on who to vote for i...

Much has been said about voting or not voting and who to vote for. I believe that both decisions are very straightforward. Read more...

0 comments 759 views
Submitted by
Colin Webster452
MSSA's General Secretary to be a ...

120 officials from e-sports and sports industries will participate in the Global e-Sports Executive Summit,which will be held by International e-Sports Federation (IeSF) in Shanghai, China for 2 days, from July 30th to July 31st. Read more...

0 comments 54 views
Submitted by
Struan Robertson
Why Does Science Set Us Free?

Why does science set us free? The short answer. Science sets us free because as a method of inquiry it is about the pursuit of truth and as the universal law stated in John so clearly says it is knowing the truth that sets us free. Read more...

0 comments 685 views
 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on Android Get the latest from News24 on your Android device.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

TV Get us in your home, on your television.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2016 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.