Bob Dylan Addresses Controversy Over Books And Art Signed With Autopen

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Bob Dylan Addresses Controversy Over Books And Art Signed With Autopen

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Bob Dylan has addressed the “autopen” controversy surrounding his new book The Philosophy Of Modern Song, as well as certain “artwork prints.” As a reminder, fans who paid $599 to purchase limited-edition “hand-signed” copies of the book are set to be reimbursed by publisher Simon & Schuster, who recently admitted (after some badgering by fans) that Dylan’s “signatures” were done in a “penned replica form.” In a statement posted to social media, Dylan wrote that he’d been suffering from “a bad case of vertigo” since 2019, and it had “continued into the pandemic years.”

Dylan adds that “with contractual deadlines looming, the idea of using an auto-pen was suggested to me, along with the assurance that this kind of thing is done ‘all the time’ in the art and literary worlds” but “using a machine was an error in judgment and I want to rectify it immediately.”

See Dylan’s full statement below.

To my fans and followers,

I’ve been made aware that there’s some controversy about signatures on some of my recent artwork prints and on a limited-edition of Philosophy Of Modern Song. I’ve hand-signed each and every art print over the years, and there’s never been a problem.

However, in 2019 I had a bad case of vertigo and it continued into the pandemic years. It takes a crew of five working in close quarters with me to help enable these signing sessions, and we could not find a safe and workable way to complete what I needed to do while the virus was raging. So, during the pandemic, it was impossible to sign anything and the vertigo didn’t help. With contractual deadlines looming, the idea of using an auto-pen was suggested to me, along with the assurance that this kind of thing is done ‘all the time’ in the art and literary worlds.

Using a machine was an error in judgment and I want to rectify it immediately. I’m working with Simon & Schuster and my gallery partners to do just that.

With my deepest regrets,
Bob Dylan

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