First, the Poster as Art. Now the Original Photo Is Too

I in a limited edition of 200. Asking price: $1,200 for a print.

I've been following the controversy between the Associated Press and artist Shepard Fairey, who created the now-icon "Hope" poster of Barack Obama. AP says Fairey owes it some money, because the poster was based on a photo made by an agency freelancer, Mannie Garcia. Today's New York Times tells us that Garcia's original picture is also becoming a collector's item. It is being sold at what the newspaper calls "a Chelsea gallery" in a limited edition of 200. Asking price: $1,200 for a print. The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston has bought the poster and a Garcia print. Among the things I learned in the Times piece was that Garcia was also responsible for that notorious image of President George W. Bush looking out the window of Air Force One on a flyover of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Garcia himself notes in the piece that he never "made the connection" between the poster and his own image--which raises some questions about whether there were in fact copyrightable elements in the original.The photo above is by Sara Krulwich for the New York Times.--David Schonauer