Calif. Artist Presses Lawsuit Against Abercrombie & Fitch

Calif. Artist Presses Lawsuit Against Abercrombie & Fitch

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., July 5, 2006 Claiming the Hollister Co. retail chain misused his artwork, a California artist is pressing his lawsuit against Hollister and parent company Abercrombie & Fitch.

After failure to reach a settlement in May, attorneys representing artist Robb Havassy issued a demand on June 5, requesting that displays of Havassy's art be immediately removed from all 330 Hollister retail locations. Havassy's lawyers repeated the demand on June 20, suggesting failure to comply will implicate A&F and Hollister as willful infringers.

According to Havassy, several years ago the Midwest-based retail company duplicated one of his earliest painted surfboards without his permission or knowledge, and actively used the artwork to market the surf-inspired Hollister brand.

Havassy filed his suit in Los Angeles Federal Court on March 6, alleging liability for the unauthorized use of his artwork and personal identity in the retailer's national marketing.

In the suit, Havassy seeks remuneration for the use of his artwork and name by Hollister over the past several years, and for any future use. He also requests public acknowledgment that they used his graphic designs without his knowledge and permission.