Andy Warhol estate preemptively sues photographer over infringement claims
Photographer Lynn Goldsmith has been sued by The Andy Warhol Foundation following her claim that the artist infringed upon a photo she took of musician Prince in 1981. The lawsuit appears to be a preemptive strike against Goldsmith; it argues that Warhol merely 'drew inspiration' from the photo to create an entirely new - and therefore infringement-free - image.
At the heart of the issue is a 1981 publicity photo of Prince taken by Goldsmith, who has allegedly raised issues with the artist's estate over claims that Warhol's 'The Prince Series' artwork infringes her copyright. The lawsuit seeks to establish that the artist's work (made in 1984) is a new creation, thereby preventing any future potential lawsuits brought by the photographer against Warhol's estate.
The lawsuit highlights elements of Warhol's work that deviate from Goldsmith's photograph, including, 'substantially heavier makeup' around the eyes, as well as a different angle of the head. According to The Wrap, Warhol's estate is seeking a declaratory judgement stating both that the statute of limitations has run out on any possible infringement claims by Goldsmith, and likewise that the artist's work does not violate the photographer's copyright.
Update: Additional information about the case can be found on Artnet.
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