“Old Man and the Sea” clutch bag

Check out the beautiful Olympia Le-Tan clutch bag pictured below. (Shout out to Sydjia Guerra for bringing this lovely canvas bag to my attention.) This “book clutch” reimagines the cover art for Ernest Hemingway’s timeless novella “Old Man and The Sea.” Earlier this year, I featured many other works of art dedicated to Hemingway’s timeless novella, such as this beautiful book sculpture and this gorgeous graphic novel. The art lover in me appreciates these whimsical works of fan art for their own sake, but the business law professor in me is perplexed and puzzled: what is the legal status of these works? As I mentioned in some of my previous posts (see here and here), the original U.S. and British publishers of “The Old Man and the Sea” had commissioned various drawings and paintings to illustrate Hemingway’s story when it first came out. Assuming these publishers still own the legal rights to the story, do they have any “veto rights” over subsequent visualizations of the story? If so, what about “fair use”? More broadly, how far should property rights extend in the domain of art? I will interrupt my extended review of Finnis’s common good theory of law to explore these thorny questions over the holiday weekend and to catch up on my reading of “Infinite Jest” …

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About F. E. Guerra-Pujol

When I’m not blogging, I am a business law professor at the University of Central Florida.
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1 Response to “Old Man and the Sea” clutch bag

  1. Pingback: The law and economics of literary-inspired fan art (part 1 of 3) | prior probability

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