Fulvia Cosattini

Milan Fashion Week and Fashion Law Trends – Karl Lagerfeld’s heritage: who is going to award the rights on his image? Does the cat really take it all?

Last July, with “The Dawn of Romanity” haute couture show against the Colosseum backdrop, Fendi paid tribute to its longtime Creative Director Karl Lagerfeld, with 54 outfits to represent his 54-year tenure at the maison. But who owns the rights in the image of the recently deceased iconic fashion genius?

According to some leaks, the worldwide famous designer Karl Lagerfeld, before his death, would have left the entirety of his heritage to his beloved cat Choupette. This is not the first time a person decides to nominate his pet as the universal heir: from Countess Karlotta Liebenstein to Alexander McQueen, leaving everything (or a big portion of one’s assets) to a pet has become a sort of trend for many celebrities… But what are the legal consequences in relation to the rights of image of the celebrity according to the Italian law?

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Legal focus on Banksy’s art of shredding

After revolutionizing the world of art, by transforming an act of vandalism − such as murals − in million dollars artworks, Banksy has recently hit the headlines with his latest provocation. In October, during a Sotheby’s auction, right after the awarding of one of his most famous creations entitled ‘Girl with balloon’ for more than £ 1.000.000, the painting literally destroyed itself. Immediately after, the artist declared to have intentionally placed a shredding machine within the frame. As a consequence, a new piece of artwork – ‘Love is in the bin’ – was created by destroying the first.

This episode definitely calls for some legal analysis also under Italian law of what went on in that occasion. “Can a destroyed artwork be considered as an artwork itself under the Italian Copyright Law? And, above all, what about the buyer’s position, who had purchased an expensive piece of artwork and then was left with some framed stripes of shredded paper?”

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