Shepard Fairey Versus the Associated Press02.11.09   |   Posted in: Art & Design   |   By: A. Salem Jones
Tags: AP, Barack Obama, Lawsuits, Legal, Mannie Garcia, Obey, Shepard Fairey
The reference photo for Shepard Fairey’s Obama poster has been identified and the Associated Press claims it wants to get paid. The photo was shot in 2006 by photographer Mannie Garcia. Shepard preemptively filed a lawsuit attempting to protect himself from copyright infringement claims. While we’re no legal experts and we’re sympathetic to the photographer’s work, we think Shepard’s got this one. A catalyst for the legal feud may have been the acquisition of a related work by the National Portrait Gallery in Washington. It was purchased for an undisclosed amount of money.
This is not Shepard Fairey’s first encounter with the legal system. He has been arrested many times (most recently last Friday in Boston). By our estimation, he’s been arrested about fifteen times.
Photographer Mannie Garcia was very gracious. â€œI donâ€™t condone people taking things, just because they can, off the Internet,â€ Mr. Garcia said. â€œBut in this case I think itâ€™s a very unique situation. If you put all the legal stuff away, Iâ€™m so proud of the photograph and that Fairey did what he did artistically with it, and the effect itâ€™s had.â€
-Via New York Times