Urban Outfitters executives may spend the weekend partying in their infamous “Navajo Hipster Panties” and sipping from “Navajo Flasks”: the retailer has just won a partial victory in its ongoing trademark battle with the Navajo Nation, the largest indigenous tribe in the United States.
Last week I got an email advertising a collaboration between Shepard Fairey’s apparel company OBEY and the Keith Haring Foundation, resulting in T-shirts, tank tops and baseball hats — including one with an unsettling combination of Haring’s three-eyed face and Fairey’s OBEY graphic — sold at mall hipster-mecca Urban Outfitters. This was enough to make begin questioning the Keith Haring Foundation’s treatment of the artist’s legacy — and then I heard about the Tenga x Keith Haring sex toys.
We posted about Cali Killa’s copyright issue with Urban Outfitters last January, and how the corporation has blatantly stolen from the street artist to sell tshirts. Now, Melrose and Fairfax is reporting that Cali Killa had copyrighted his image and was able win his case.
“I was really upset this morning when I found out that Urban Outfitters has STOLEN the work of street artist Cali Killa.” — According2g.com
I’m a bit torn on this issue since I don’t know if an artist who uses public space to display their art (often illegally) has the right to tell someone else they cannot remix their work. In other words, if you remix public space, doesn’t someone have a right to do the same to you even if they make money off of it?