Damaged Art

So for a VERY long time now I have dealing with a business that damaged a piece of my artwork. I finally settled with their insurance, but the process was a nightmare, and it took SO much work to get everything done. Anywhoo, because this business has been horrible to deal with, I want to share my complaint to the Better Business Bureau about the business so that no one else has to go through the horrible experience that I did (again, this was written before the insurance settled). This is the complaint I filed with the Better Business Bureau:

On September 7, I brought a large pastel piece of artwork to Southern Print and Copy for a high resolution photograph. I was told it would be ready by Wednesday, September 14 and that great care would be taken so that the artwork would not be damaged. I was called on the morning of Friday, September 9 to pick up the art and CD containing the high resolution photo. After paying for the photographing service, I opened up the folder that contained my artwork and saw two long, distinct areas on the piece that indicated it had been folded or bent, which also caused portions of the pastel pigment to come off of the artwork. I was very offended that no one had told me that my art had been badly damaged. I told the man who identified himself as the Assistant Manager that my artwork had been bent and he actually placed both of his hands on the artwork and started vigorously rubbing the crease with his hand while saying that he might be able to get it out. I asked if he could please stop, because although the artwork has a fixative on it, the pastel can be damaged by rubbing it off. The Assistant Manager stopped, held up his hands, and saw that they were covered by pastel. He had not only smeared the art, but he had taken a great deal of pigment off of the artwork as well. I also witnessed another employee, whose name I do not know, but whom I could recognize, touching the art in various places with his hands. I could not believe that anyone who is familiar with any kind of art would not only put the oils from their hands all over the piece, but also harshly rub the surface of the art.The Assistant Manager asked what I wanted done about the situation. I told him I would not pay for the photo since my artwork was damaged during the process. He did credit me back for the cost of the photograph service and CD a total of $48.

When I checked the file on the CD, it was not a high resolution photograph. In fact, it is very blurry and I will be unable to make prints from the file, which is why I needed the high resolution photo in the first place. However, on the original PDF photo file that was given to me on CD by Southern Print and Copy, it is clearly evident that the artwork does NOT have the crease. On Monday, September 12, I went back to Southern Print and Copy so that I could speak with the owner. At first, the Manager spoke with me. I was also very displeased with his manner of addressing me. He not only told me to calm down when I was not raising my voice or acting inappropriately in any way, but he also laughed at me when I requested to be compensated. I have never been treated by anyone, the way this business has treated me. I was then taken in to see the owner, who reviewed my information and looked at the artwork and the original image on the CD. The following day, I received an email from the owner saying that she had reviewed everyone involved in the case and stating that the damage was already on the artwork before I brought the piece to Southern Print and Copy. This was an absolute lie. I immediately sent both hard copy and electronic photos of the damaged piece, as well the original image from the CD so they could compare the two side by side, although they had inspected the actual artwork and original CD image just two days prior. A letter of my intent also accompanied the photos. I requested compensation for my damaged artwork by October 14th, which would give them an entire month to resolve the matter. The owner then sent me an email saying that she had filed a claim with her insurance. I have sent the owner’s insurance company copies of my receipts and other related files and I still have heard nothing. My goal in filing a claim with the BBB is to let others know the kind of service, or lack thereof, I have received from Southern Print and Copy, and to warn other artists that Southern Print and Copy can greatly damage your artwork and lie about it too.

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