Banksy is so 2005

On finding out about the one month residency in New York ‘better out than in’ by Banksy my initial reaction was ‘urghh Banksy so 2005 give it a break mate’. Every time someone blogged or tweeted about it made my blood boil a little. So much so I was very close to unfollowing a very good friend.

On the final day of his residency I saw the concrete confessional.

I kinda liked it. The more I thought about it the more I loved it. So I began looking into the rest of the work accumulated from over the past month and as much as it pains me to say, it really is quite great.


Especially ‘The Sirens of the Lambs. A slaughterhouse delivery truck touring the meatpacking district and then citywide for two weeks.

But what was really interesting to discover was that he held a sale of his stencils on canvas on a New York street. He only managed to sell eight works to three customers across a full day of trading.

A ‘fake’ Banksy the set up on a similar street. He sold all 40 of his works in one hour.

The sale was created by artists Dave Cicirelli and Lance Pilgrim. They copied Banksy’s own sale from a week earlier, setting up a stall in the same location, with the same signage, selling copies of Banksy’s works for the same price — $60 — as the original artist. The only difference: the stall was clearly marked as a fake. Salesman Michael Pilgrim posed for pictures with buyers holding a sign clearly marked ‘Fake Banksy’, and all purchases came with a Certificate of Inauthenticity.

The work was so in demand someone even bought the price sign.

So perhaps I was slightly wrong to poo poo it. Banksy is so 2005, but still great eight years later. His work is more than just stencilling a heart illegally on the side of a building. It has meaning. It’s the ugly made beautiful.

‘All pictures painted inside, in the studio, will never be as good as those done outside’. – Paul Cézanne



Tim Walker & Other stuff

Four weeks into the course and I have finally had a chance to pause and reflect. So far we have set up our websites. Created an A1 poster which will be printed next week. Held our own funeral and designed our own epitaphs. Started discussing the final show. Had some great lectures.


The first one from Matt Dixon the creative director of aka who will be lecturing at Chelsea. He discussed the work they have been doing with the Royal Opera House and on trying to work with Tim Walker. The Pastel Cats image was taken in 2000. Thirteen years ago now and Walker is one of the most sought after fashion photographers around. His exhibition last year at Somerset House was beautiful. If you haven’t heard of him yet I really recommend purchasing Storyteller.

Next Week is Vaughan Oliver.

Let’s take a moment to appreciate Will Smith

Everyone has seen the amazing moment on Graham Norton when Will, Alfonso Ribeiro & Jazzy Jeff do a medley of songs that bring a lot of feelings of nostalgia and happiness back. Remembering how great the show really was.

But not many have seen this other clip I have posted where you see another side to the fresh prince.

He is a truly inspiring individual. A quality that I also see very strongly in my partner. One of his clients sent him a great text the other day – Jazz I drove past you cycling up hill earlier with a huge smile on your face, you are one hell of an inspirational guy’ This is something that I will always remember and appreciate him for. I get told to smile more often or ‘cheer up love’ quite often and he just walks around smiling all day. Even when the road he’s on is tough. How often do you see people cycling and smiling? In fact how often do you see people smiling at all?

Jim Rohn once said “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with” – I disagree with this. I am INSPIRED by the people I spend the most time with. I would be proud to say I am the average of even the three people closest to me. If I had the ability to smile whilst cycling uphill like Jazz. Work hard like my Mum. A work ethic that puts anyone to shame. But still enjoy life’s great moments like my Dad. I would be a pretty great girl!

Perhaps this post is not about appreciating Will Smith at all. Well maybe a little. But I guess this post is actually about celebrating those individuals that really inspire you in different ways. So bravo you really great people, keep doing what your doing.

Opinion: Are we too sensitive to artistic plagiarism online?

An article on It’s Nice That. Interesting to see peoples opinions – One of the things that stood out to me the most was written by Tommy Eugene Higson ‘one of the problems with the very notion of plagiarism is that frequently people do not understand the difference between plagiarism and appropriation’.

Will be looking at this next after receiving my copy of ‘Appropriation’ edited by David Evans. A collection of work from the likes of Jean Baudrillard, Walter Benjamin, Nicolas Bourriaud, Guy Debord and many others.

Devious Maids

Receiving a lot of backlash and criticism for not only latina stereotyping but how influenced it has been by desperate housewives. The show created by Marc Cherry who also created desperate housewives has had a lot of input from executive producer Eva Longoria. After watching the pilot I can see both issues quite clearly but I am also hooked after one episode and can’t wait for next weeks. Was really great in particular to see the return of Judy Reyes who played Carla on Scrubs and Ana Ortiz from Ugly Betty.

Many are disgusted with the stereotyping but at the same time you can not take away that fact that this is the first time a prime-time programme has featured an all latina cast. This is great, no?



‘Design right’ in fashion: the debate.

Yesterday I attended a talk in Holborn held as part of Artsmart 2013 a three week long summer festival of events, activities and workshops to help students and graduates from University of the Arts London get smart and make it happen in the creative industries.

Although the talk was primarily for fashion designers all wanting to protect their work and know their rights as up and coming designers I found it very helpful for my dissertation on copying and in particular copying in the fashion industry.

The speakers were Vin half of High end fashion and multi media designers – Vin & Omi www.vinandomi.comAlice Stagg, legal adviser at law firm Wragge & Co.

Hosting was a Lady from which gives intellectual property advice for the creative sector.

Alice Stagg talked about covered a lot of material in particular – What is a design right? unregistered community design rights which happen automatically on a new design that has individual character has been made available to the public. This will be protected for three years and enforced throughout the EU.

Where as in the UK it will be covered for 15 years but and its a big but only covers 3D objects, not 2D prints unfortunately. She gave the example of Tatty Devine and Claire’s accessories. ImageTatty devine named and shamed Claire’s on their website.

This isn’t the first time we’ve noticed this kind of thing at high street retailer Claire’s. Last year, a customer sent us this photo.So what do you reckon? Please leave a comment below and let us know what you think. Please let Claire’s know your thoughts too. You can find them on Twitter, on Facebook or email

We’re very much hoping Claire’s will be willing to withdraw these pieces.

UPDATED Thursday 23rd February: Following legal advice, we’re now closing the comments on this blog post. Thank you for all the support.

UPDATED Tuesday 28th February: Thank you for all your comments on this post, it’s been very helpful. We’ve had over 200 comments, which we took to a meeting with our legal advisors today. We’ve now removed all comments for review. If you’d like to carry on the conversation, please visit us on Facebook or Twitter.

UPDATED Wednesday 29th February: Claire’s Accessories’ lawyers wrote to us today to say that the dinosaur necklace, fishbone necklace and banana necklace have now been removed from sale. They are not admitting that these designs are infringements, and they have not withdrawn all designs. We are taking legal advice on their letter, but we are pleased to have a response and that these three items have been withdrawn from sale.

UPDATED Thursday 19th April: We’re pleased to announce a resolution has now been reached between Tatty Devine and Claire’s Accessories. Read the official joint statement.

We then discussed why you should register. Vin talked about sending your designs in a sealed envelope to a mutual place such as a bank having them stored their with the date stamped on them. This is a good resolution as registering each design that you may not even use/like eventually would be very expensive.

The case between Zara and Louboutin was brought up in which a French court gave high street retailer Zara the official go ahead to use the red soles. They even ordered Louboutin to pay Zara 2,500 euros as compensation.

Louboutin’s red sole trademark, obtained in 2008, came under dispute last year when he sued YSL for selling a shoe with a red sole. As it turns out, the company also sued Zara in June 2011 for “counterfeiting and unfair competition” for selling a red-soled shoe. The court initially ruled in favor of Louboutin. Zara then issued an appeal, which was upheld on the argument that Louboutin’s trademark specifications were too vague (they didn’t include a Pantone color reference but now do) and that there was no proven risk of confusion between the two pairs of heels.

From this we discussed Lucasfilm Limited v Ainsworth a 2011 court ruling by the Supreme Court in the U.K. The case concerned an intellectual property dispute over the production of Lucasfilm’s Stormtrooper costumes by model maker Andrew Ainsworth. Ainsworth argued that the helmets, which he continues to manufacture and sell, were functional props covered only by design right legislation, as opposed to Lucasfilm’s assertion that they were sculptures or art which fall under copyright law.

Copyright law covers drawing and sketches, handmade individual items but not anything mass made. There is no need for registration and can last for 70 years after authors death.

Then we moved on to trademarks and domain names and discussed internet trolls who hack into websites to see what domain names are being searched and purchase them before the searcher can.

Vin was next to talk and had some great examples such as Yasmin Kianfar v. Topshop

Natacha Marro V. Jeffrey Campbell



 Jeremy Scott V. Jim PhillipsImage

Image found on this is a statement from the CEO of NHS, Inc./Santa Cruz Skateboards regarding  this issue: We know there is a lot of controversy regarding fashion designers Jeremy Scott’s new Winter collection in regards to the iconic Phillips art work similarities. We are aware and our CEO issued this statement…… “We had never heard of Jeremy Scott until it was brought to our attention,” said Robert A. Denike, CEO and President, NHS, Inc./Santa Cruz Skateboards. “This is not a collaboration or under license, nor did we or the Phillips family approve the use of this artwork on his apparel designs in any way. “It’s obvious to us, the Phillips family, the fans of Jim Phillips Sr. and Jimbo Phillips, and fans of the brand Santa Cruz Skateboards, as well as many in the global skateboard and skate art community that there is clear and obvious infringement by Mr. Scott. We are discussing this with our legal team to determine our next steps. “These two artists and this brand are iconic. Any true fan of skateboarding will tell you how the Phillips artwork style, this brand and the activity of skateboarding has positively influenced their lives. “It may just be artwork to Mr. Scott, to be used and thrown away by next season, but these artists and brand mean a lot to many people around the world. And by the looks of the outcry on social media, skateboarders and non-skater’s alike are angry to have two of their most favored artists and one of the original true skateboard brands violated in such a way. “I hope that Mr. Scott sees that his actions have hurt and affected many people, including the Phillips family, and that he has also severely damaged his own reputation. It is not too late for him to do the right thing, as an artist and creative person, and fix his error in judgement.”

Vin posed ‘Where are you on the morality scale?’ I will be posting on this next.

& So it begins

The literature review was a great start. I steered clear of questioning what is ‘real’, ‘copy’, and ‘fake’ as I felt not quite confident enough to launch into a deep philosophical debate just yet. This will be key for the dissertation though so in preparation I have just done a huge amazon shop and looking forward to receiving the 22 book order! Wonder how big the box is?!

Till then I am going to find and explore ideas of the simulacrum and simulacra using online material… Brian Massumi argues in, REALER THAN REAL The Simulacrum According to Deleuze and Guattari (1987) they are, ‘Against cynicism, a thin but fabulous hope–of ourselves becoming realer than real in a monstrous contagion of our own making’ (Massumi 1987)