October 13, 2007

Indian art from the Philippines

Fake art harms American Indian artistsThese days, fakes in the American Indian art world look so much like the real thing that customers are being fooled. And the real artists are losing out on income.

That's critical on a reservation where making jewelry is the key industry and where elders put unemployment at 70 percent.

"If we don't protect our livelihood, we'll end up in Wal-Mart," says Eriacho, vice president of a group with a Hoosier tie that advocates against fake art and educates the public on buying the authentic stuff.

Indian artists, Eriacho laments, have found their own original art copied without their OK. The fakes typically come out of Asian factories, many of them in the Philippines, he says.
Pictured below:  One of these pieces of jewelry was made by a Zuni Indian artist from New Mexico and one was copied overseas.

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