This week I have been involved in exposing a fraudster.
You would think that telling the truth would make you feel good about yourself but it doesn’t. At one point before I contacted the person in question and called him out on his fraud; plagiarizing other artists’ work, I even asked my daughters if there was ever a time that lying was excusable. Both said NO!
I contacted other people effected by his deceit to ask their advice. In the end I chose to reveal the lie. Had it just put an end to his actions I’m sure I would feel fine but because I know his lie will hurt, disappoint and embarrass those around him exposing that lie leaves a bitter taste.
The thing is when you expose someone’s lie, you also expose those close to them to the truth. And sometimes that isn’t pretty. It hurts to have been betrayed by someone you love and trust. The impact of their actions isn’t just felt by themselves. Like a pebble dropped into a still pond that ripple of the lie forms an ever increasing circle and reaches ever more people, in this case his family, his friends, the artists he ripped off, the art galleries who trusted his authenticity and sold his art and the art collectors who bought it.
Initially when I contacted him I was thinking he had copied a couple of paintings but when I called him out about it he just blocked me (on Facebook) which made me think he had something to hide and Oh Boy he did!
He has proved himself to be quite a prolific con man and a simple search of his name on Facebook brings up multiple references to his flagrant copying of other people’s work. There is a huge difference between being inspired by someone’s work and actually copying it brush stroke for brush stroke. Most of the artists aren’t angry as much as disappointed in his actions.
I wish that those people around him weren’t affected by his dishonesty, that only his actions would be exposed and that would put an end to his blatant plagiarizing, that he could slither off into the sunset and never be seen again. Unfortunately in these days of trial by social media that won’t happen and I’m sure once his story becomes ever more public those closest to him are the people who will be hurt and embarrassed the most.
He may feel that his life has been ruined by those artists who exposed him but in truth he is the one who created this the very first time he thought he could get away with his copying. He is the architect of this unfortunate reality.
‘What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create” Buddha
Karma can be such a bitch!