Shepard Fairey, artist of the famous Obama Hope poster, admits he lied to the court in the copyright infringement lawsuit resulting from the poster:
In a strange twist to an already complicated legal situation, artist Shepard Fairey admitted today to legal wrongdoing in his ongoing battle with the Associated Press.
Fairey said in a statement issued late Friday that he knowingly submitted false images and deleted others in the legal proceedings, in an attempt to conceal the fact that the AP had correctly identified the photo that Fairey had used as a reference for his “Hope” poster of then-Sen. Barack Obama. . .
In February, the AP claimed that Fairey violated copyright laws when he used one of their images as the basis for the poster. In response, the artist filed a lawsuit against the AP, claiming that he was protected under fair use. Fairey also claimed that he used a different photo as the inspiration for his poster.
After Fairey’s admission, a spokesman for the Associated Press issued a statement saying that Fairey “sued the AP under false pretenses by lying about which AP photograph he used.”
Fairey said that his lawyers have taken the steps to amend his court pleadings to reflect the fact that “the AP is correct about which photo I used as a reference and that I was mistaken.”
Here’s what “mistaken” means in this case:
Fairey’s counsel has now admitted that Fairey tried to destroy documents that would have revealed which image he actually used. Fairey’s counsel has also admitted that he created fake documents as part of his effort to conceal which photo was the source image, including hard copy printouts of an altered version of the Clooney Photo and fake stencil patterns of the Hope and Progress posters.
Incidentally, it seems that to those who have been paying attention to the case, it was obvious all along that Fairey was lying.
UPDATE: This guy is a real piece of work. Not being into the underground art scene, I didn’t know that before the Hope poster, Fairey was best known for, shall we say, unsanctioned public art. But he doesn’t want graffiti on his own property.