Spanish fashion company, Zara, came under fire in July when they were accused of stealing independent artist’s work and selling them for profit.
Tuesday Bassen, an independent artist who has worked with Urban Outfitters and Nike, filed an official complaint with the company Zara for stealing her work and making profit off it. She took to her social media to bring attention to the theft, only to find that more artists were going to accuse the company of the same. Bassen kept relatively quiet about the theft for a while, she said, but now Bassen has finally came out with a statement about the company’s stealing.
Artist Adam Kurtz also came out and said that Zara had stolen from his work, and Kurtz provided his own graphic like Bassen’s above to showcase it. He went further than that later on, creating a page on his website where you can see the original artist’s work. Not only that, but he provides links so you can purchase the original work, and also evidence that Zara had stolen the designs.
Bassen has a long legal process ahead. As of July 20th, Bassen had already spent $2,000 dollars on this case. Bassen states: “I plan to further press charges, but even to have a lawyer get this LETTER has cost me $2k so far.” On top of that, Zara’s response to the accusation from Bassen wasn’t pretty at all.
“We reject your claims here for reasons similar to those already stated,” said Zara back to Bassen’s lawyer. “The lack of distinctiveness of your client’s purported designs makes it very hard to see how a significant part of the population anywhere in the world would associate the signs with Tuesday Bassen.”
Zara continued to say that they were also being notified of this via third-parties, stating: “Please note that such notifications amount to a handful of complaints only; when it is borne in mind that millions of users worldwide visit the respective websites daily […], the figures clearly put those few notifications into sharp perspective.”
As one would expect, Bassen did not take kindly to the response her lawyer was given from Zara. “Zara’s lawyers are literally saying I have no base because I’m an indie artist and they’re a major corporation,” Bassen tweeted, along with an image of her plagiarized work and an image of the statement quoted above. (X)
Several news outlets began to cover this, from Fusion, to MTV, to Cosmopolitan. However, the media outlet BuzzFeed also covered this story, and they had also been accused of plagiarism and theft themselves only a few weeks beforehand by several YouTubers, including comedian Akilah Hughes.
It is unclear, at the time of writing this article, if Bassen and the other artists will be able to receive any justice for the designs stolen. For now you can visit the sources linked below for more information.