You could have gone your whole life without ever hearing of Nadia Plesner and her effort to raise awareness of genocide in Darfur. Then, for reasons that boggle the mind, Louis Vuitton decides to wage a legal battle with the artist over her use of the image shown here. Plesner created the “Simple Living” T-shirt and poster campaign to contrast the suffering in Sudan with the opulence of U.S. celebrity. But Vuitton believes she’s infringing on its intellectual property rights by showing that handbag, which it says is similar to this tacky number (though what they claim looks like the LV logo looks more like the mark of a certain Midwestern baseball team). I’ll be honest: When it comes to her legal defense, it’s a bit of a sticky wicket. One could argue she’s not creating a parody of Louis Vuitton but is instead using its work in a satire of pop culture. In the U.S., courts have been tougher on satire than parody. But the real question is, Why would Louis Vuitton pick this fight in the first place? It’s hard to think of a worse idea for one’s corporate image than to sue an artist who’s trying to help victims of genocide. Via Osocio.
—Posted by David Griner