Prominent British artist Anish Kapoor has filed a lawsuit again the National Rifle Association of America, claiming that his world-famous Cloud Gate sculpture was used in one of their online advertisements without his permission. Kapoor is seeking $150,000 for each infringement, the number of which is yet to be determined.
The sculpture, which is better known as the “Bean” and is located in Chicago’s Millennium Park, was registered with the U.S. Copyright Office in January 2016. In the gun rights organisation’s video, it appears alongside black-and-white footage of protests and other famous landmarks and is, according to an open letter from Kapoor, being used “to whip up fear and hate”. It uses the imagery to attack mainstream US media and encourages viewers to “fight this violence of lies with the clenched fist of truth.”
The video “plays to the basest and most primal impulses of paranoia, conflict and violence, and uses them in an effort to create a schism to justify its most regressive attitudes,” said Kapoor.
The complaint notes that Kapoor has already asked the NRA to remove the image from the video but it has “failed and refused to do so.”
“These sadly are times in which it is urgent for us all, in whatever way we can, to stand up to the dark and aggressive forces in society that seek, out of fear and hatred, to lead us backward into a primitive, paranoid, and defensive worldview,” reads a statement from the artist.