Italian Artist Threatens to Sue Cardi B Over Her Halloween Costume of Marge Simpson
An Italian artist called out Cardi B for “illegally” copying his Marge Simpson art in a Halloween Instagram post. Cardi B, whose real name is Belcalis Marlenis Almánzar, posted a slideshow on Instagram on October 31 showing off her Halloween costume.
One of the photos showed her as the famous TV character, dressed in a black Thierry Mugler gown from 1995. Another photo showed the art that inspired her to look.
In 2013, Alessandro Palombo made this piece of art as part of his “Marge Simpson Style Icon” series. The first magazine to print it was Vogue UK. In her caption, the American rapper talked about Mugler, but she didn’t say anything about Palombo.
Palombo wrote on Instagram on November 26: “Cardi B and her collaborators have used my artwork without my permission, diluting its original meaning and only using it to boost their image for commercial reasons that have nothing to do with the path of social awareness that has always been the focus of my work.”
He also said that he had written to Cardi B and her team, including her stylist Kollin Carter and photographer Jora Frantzis, to ask why he hadn’t been asked for permission to use his work. “I still haven’t heard back,” he said. Cardi B, Frantzis, and Carter have all been asked for their thoughts on the situation.
His lawyer, Claudio Volpi, told Artnet News, “Cardi B has illegally taken Alex Sandro Palombo’s work for purely commercial purposes, breaking the most basic rules on copyright and Instagram policies, with serious risks for her public image, both in terms of compensation and discredit.”
Volpi also said that his client had only heard back from Frantzis, who said she didn’t know there was an artist behind the work but would be “glad to add the credits.”
Palombo asked Cardi B and everyone else who liked her looks to share a “corrective” post giving credit to him. Volpi said that the artist did not respond to Palombo’s request.
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At the time this article was written, neither Frantzis’ nor Carter’s Instagram posts gave Palombo credit. Volpi told Artnet News that he has sent an official notice to Cardi B, Frantzis, Carter, and Atlantic Records chairman Craig Kallman, asking them to share a follow-up post within seven days of receiving it.
Volpi said that if the “WAP” singer doesn’t do what they want, they will go to court. Volpi was inspired by a picture of a model wearing a Mugler gown that showed her bottom. Palombo said that for the Vogue series, he put Marge in “dresses that changed the course of costume history.”
“We might not think of these clothes as art, but the aesthetic vision they show has been a big part of women’s progress toward freedom since 1900,” he said.