Saturday, October 10, 2009

Watusi, derivative work of L'Escargot?

A comment to a post at MPR titled Art for the White House reads as follows:

Of course, it is reproduction of a 1953 piece by Henri Matisse titled “L’Escargot” (rotated 90 degrees). But one does not really expect originality in the Obama White House.

A later post stated:

Let's call this a "teachable moment." Alma Thomas was indeed inspired by Henri Matisse, and knowingly used his work "L'Escargot" as the basis for "Watusi" - inverting the colors and "twisting" the work to give a new view.

In the world of copyright, there is the concept of the derivative work right. In the world of patents, one can obtain a patent with claims that fall entirely within the scope of claims of another patent. A genus does not necessarily anticipate, or render obvious, a species. A genus could render a species obvious. It depends on the facts.

**As to originality, LBE submitted, well before Nov. 2008, an article to IPFrontline, titled The Problem with 'Gold-Plated' Patents , pointing out that now-President Obama's proposal on gold-plated patents did not originate with Obama AND was not a good idea. IPFrontline published the article on January 26, 2009.

**UPDATE. One blog has noted:

The [Thomas] painting had quietly disappeared from the White House by late October [2009]. The Hirshhorn Museum confirmed it had been returned, but no one in the White House was talking.


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