Goldengate: The Resolution

Is this the end of Goldengate? Who knows. This email from Renee Witterstaetter and Gerry Turnbull crossed my desk, along with probably half the world, yesterday evening.

If an amicable solution has been worked out then that's great. Kudos to all concerned. Part of me wonders the following though; has Golden damaged his reputation at all? Probably not. He's still Michael Golden and there's plenty of people who'll be seeking him out for a commission. After the publicity he's gained from all of this he can more than likely increase his prices. I know of a few people who've said they won't be seeking Golden out for work, but they'd be in the minority. And why? Because people love to be insulted. An artist I correspond with asked me why I say that, and here's part of the reply I sent back to him.

It's funny - people like to be insulted. I have a pal who used to play in a seminal band here called The Bodgies. Great band, The Bodgies, if you ever get a chance to see them then do so. You'll have a brilliant time. One NYE years ago my ex-wife, my brother and his wife went to see them. During the course of the night Don Morrison, the lead singer, whom I knew from my days in radio, convinced me to buy a poster (the bastard had me working the bar for half the night, but that's another story). As the original line-up were playing (three Morrison brothers and the bassist) I said I'd buy one if they all signed it, which they did. Others then bought the posters and asked for them to personalised. Don wrote on one poster: "Hey John - Get F*&ked! Don!" The guy looked at him and then whooped and showed his friends. Don ended up writing stuff like, "Hey Pete, I F*&ked Your Missus! Don!" - stuff like that. The worse he got the more people liked it, because it was unique and different.

At the end of the day what Golden did was wrong, but Gerry Turnbull has a piece of art with a great story to go with it and I'd hazard a guess to say that right now it's probably the best known and most recognisable of all of Golden's work to date. Say the name Michael Golden to most comic book fans and art collectors and they'll be pointing you towards that Dr Strange image. Golden is now a bad boy of art (after all others take longer to deliver at - Bill Sienkiewicz can take up to six years to deliver a commission!) and people like bad boys. Golden has gained publicity out of this that money can't buy. I'd not be surprised if he's laughing himself silly right now.

Renee Witterstaetter/Gerry Turnbull

As some of you know, there has been a discussion over recent weeks about some art commissions, between on the one hand, Michael Golden (artist); and on the other hand, Gerry Turnbull and three other art collectors. All parties involved have now come to an amicable resolution for all concerned, which involves those who wish to keep their commissions, doing so; and fair compensation for those who wish another option. Whilst much has been said in public--we are all agreeing amicably on the situation--discussions on which had been somewhat delayed by the SDCC. We are all also agreeing that while asking for the art to be delivered in time for San Diego put the artist in the position of having to move three pieces before other work, that the collectors were not aware that was the case, or that the delivery of others artwork would be delayed because of that. To be clear, all four collectors had delivery dates, all of which were changed several times due to Michael's cover schedule, which we place before commission work at times. But none of these four collectors, knowingly or otherwise, jumped any commission line.

Also, contrary to the rampant message boards, it is agreed that neither the collectors, Michael, or his agent, lied about any "good faith" on their part, in the course of these events. There has been some disagreement about expectations, and the fact that the artist's humor on the pieces wasn't expected by the purchasers. It is acknowledged however, that Golden holds no malice towards the four collectors, and the four collectors hold no malice towards Mr. Golden. In fact, this situation started out as one of mutual respect, and it is everyone's desire for the situation to be just that.

After discussing all sides of the matter amicably this week and looking at the matter as a whole, we now feel the subject is respectfully settled to the satisfaction of all, and everyone seems
pleased with the outcome. At any rate, its all resolved now and some of us will be getting together to share a Pepsi (or Coke) together at the Baltimore show .

Renee Witterstaetter (for herself and Michael Golden), Gerry Turnbull (for himself, Malcolm, Michael and Brian)


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