Warhol estate loses U.S. Supreme Court copyright fight over Prince paintings

By Blake Brittain

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Andy Warhol’s estate lost its U.S. Supreme Court copyright fight with celebrity photographer Lynn Goldsmith on Thursday as the justices faulted the famed pop artist’s use of her photo of singer Prince in a silkscreen series depicting the charismatic rock star.

The justices upheld a lower court’s ruling that Warhol’s works based on Goldsmith’s 1981 photo were not immune from her copyright infringement lawsuit.

The case has been watched closely in the art world and entertainment industry for its implications regarding the legal doctrine called fair use, which promotes freedom of expression by allowing the use of copyright-protected works under certain circumstances without the owner’s permission.

(Reporting by Blake Brittain; Editing by Will Dunham)

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