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Criminal Artists

November 12, 2014

An article in Huffington Post UK, “Criminal Art: Paintings by Famous Killers and Criminals,” discusses the idea of pieces of artwork created by those who have committed terrible crimes being sold for profit. The piece above, which depicts some sort of demonic creature, was created by Henry Lee Lucas, a man who confessed to being involved in hundreds of murders. It is one thing to consider prisoners creating these pieces of art, but it is surprising to know that people are actually willing to pay for them. For example, a series of pieces created by the Kray twins, two English gangsters, was mentioned in the article to have been sold in an auction for 15,000 pounds. What does this phenomenon say about society today? Does Michelle Brown’s concept of penal spectatorship in The Culture of Punishment apply?

 

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