ARTIST Arturo di Modica says the placement of the “Fearless Girl” statue against his “Charging Bull” on Wall Street initially made him “sick” and wounded his pride — but now he wants revenge.
The frail Di Modica, 76, was surrounded by a half a dozen lawyers Wednesday at a press conference where it was announced the artist is seeking to sue State Street Global Advisors, the mutual fund company that placed “Fearless Girl” in opposition to his work, for trademark and copyright infringement.
“I’m not a ‘poor Arturo’,” Di Modica said, in reference to a New York Post story in which artist Kristen Visbal, commissioned to create the bronze of a sassy girl staring down the bull, admitted feeling sorry his iconic work was now a source of mockery.
“I am an artist!” Di Modica whispered, barely able to finish his sentence and touching his chest. Di Modica has previously told The Post he is suffering from cancer.
“Fearless Girl” — placed for International Women’s Day — initially had a temporary permit to stand opposite the bull, but Mayor de Blasio extended it another 11 months after women’s groups demanded it stay longer.
Aside from potentially violating the trademark and copyright Di Modica owns on “Charging Bull” — State Street has shown the bull and “Fearless Girl” together on marketing materials — his lawyers say the new bronze also violates commercial laws.
One Di Modica’s lawyers, Norman Siegel, said State Street had erected a plaque near the bronze, since taken down, that advertised one of its funds.
Siegel said the advertising exploits commercial use laws. Siegel said he filed several Freedom of Information requests to discover if the Mayor’s Office of Citywide Event Coordination and Management and Street Activity Permit Office had any dealings or communication with State Street before the statute went up.
Di Modica says he might not sue if “Fearless Girl” is taken down and put somewhere else — like in front of the New York Stock Exchange.
“I am not against women,” the artist said. “I am against this advertising trick.”
SOURCE: newsnow worldnews