Statement by Raymond & Monita Wong regarding recent media coverage
of Matthew Wong’s Artwork & Unauthorized Use of Copyrighted Images
Dear friends, supporters, collectors, and members of the media:
We wish to address the recent media attention around Matthew Wong’s artwork. We are happy that Matthew’s works are continuing to be recognized and appreciated and we hope he can be an inspiration to others, but we feel compelled to say that the unauthorized use of images of Matthew himself has been particularly painful for us to see. We understand why journalists or others would want to use images of Matthew – it helps to put a face to a name, to tell a story of a young, hugely talented artist whose life ended too soon, etc. And we have in the past authorized the use of images of Matthew in certain limited circumstances.
However, the copyright to many of the photographic images of Matthew that are being used in the media are owned by the Estate of Matthew Wong (as they were selfies that Matthew himself took), or Matthew Wong Painter Ltd. (a company we formed for Matthew several years ago when he started selling his works through galleries, that owns the rights to certain of his artistic works), or the Matthew Wong Foundation (a non-profit foundation we have recently created to preserve and promote Matthew’s legacy), and/or Raymond Wong and Monita Wong (us, Matthew’s parents).
With very few exceptions, none of the persons or entities above have given permission to anyone to use, reproduce, display, etc. any image of Matthew, and we are asking that you please remove these images immediately if you are using or displaying them.
If you want to use an image of Matthew for which one of the entities above owns the copyright, please simply contact us at [email@example.com] and we’ll be happy to consider your request.
The rights in connection with those images, photographs, etc., are protected under the Hong Kong SAR Copyright Ordinance (as amended) and/or the Copyright Act of Canada (and as would be recognized and given effect extra-territorially by, inter alia, the United Kingdom and the United States (and many other countries) under the Berne Convention, the Universal Copyright Convention, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Copyright Treaty (WCT), the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), and/or other applicable conventions, treaties, and laws).
We miss our son Matthew every day, and the void in our lives he has left will hurt for the rest of our lives. Matthew was a constant joy in our lives for the 35 years we were fortunate to be his parents, and it was with amazement that we saw his artistic talents and creative works come to be appreciated by more and more people worldwide over the last five years in particular. We could not be prouder of what he accomplished, and we intend to ensure that his legacy is properly preserved so that future generations can also appreciate what so many have already, and so that his story and artistic creations can inspire others.
We are happy that so many more people are learning about and coming to appreciate Matthew’s story, his immense talent, and his creative spirit, and we hope that it continues. Thank you for your love and support, and most of all, for your appreciation of Matthew’s talents and creations.
Raymond & Monita Wong