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FASHION DESIGNERS HIT A ROAD BLOCK: Moschino and Roberto Cavalli Sued For Infringing on Street Art

Rime - Vandal Eyes Mural.jpgLately, fashion designers have been losing their artistic inspiration and instead have turned to grabbing the design work of others, specifically street artists.

Italian Fashion house Moschino was sued by street artist Joseph Tierney, also known as Rime, for using his "Vandal Eyes" mural in Moschino's February 2015 fashion line. The brand also publicly flaunted the design on singer Katy Perry alongside Moschino designer Jeremy Scott at the 2015 Met Gala, an event that is highly publicized.

Tierney claims that the dress constituted unfair competition and violated hisMoschino Katy Perry Steet Art Fashion-2.jpg publicity rights. Right of publicity is the right to control one's commercial use of their identity, including: name, image, and likeness. The case is currently ongoing, but we will soon see how the Court will decide unless the parties choose to settle beforehand.

Another fashion designer, Roberto Cavalli, is having similar problems. Street artists, Revok, Reyes, and Steel are suing Cavalli for copying their street art and placing it on his entire line of graffiti adorned clothing and accessories.

The artists claim that all of the graffiti that was used looks like their artwork. The original artwork contains the stylized signatures of all the artists from the mural it was taken from. However, Cavalli was able to place the art on the garments without showing the signatures. Cavalli even added his own name in spray paint on top of the works.In this case, Cavalli who is facing various other lawsuits, decided to settle out of court in January 2016.

MSK Mural.jpg
The lesson here for artists is to make sure your work is protected. For those wanting to use the work of others: do not copy any type of artwork without permission, usually in the form of a license or other type of agreement, even if you think no one has the rights to the work.

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