Loading articles...

Copyright holder settles lawsuit with LOVE artist's estate

Last Updated Jun 11, 2021 at 10:47 am PDT

ROCKLAND, Maine (AP) — The estate of pop artist Robert Indiana has reached a settlement that keeps intact a longstanding relationship with Morgan Art Foundation, which holds the copyright for his iconic 1960s “LOVE” series, to promote and preserve his work, officials said Friday.

New York-based Morgan Art Foundation intends to work with the Maine-based Star of Hope Foundation, which aims to transform Indiana’s island home into a museum to display and celebrate his work.

“The future is bright for the market and legacy of Robert Indiana, and the estate is pleased to have helped create this success,” James Brannan, a Rockland attorney for the estate, said in a statement.

Indiana’s estate had been entangled in a lawsuit brought by Morgan Art Foundation. The lawsuit was filed the day before Indiana’s death on May 19, 2018, at age 89 on Vinalhaven Island, 15 miles (25 kilometers) off Rockland, Maine.

It accused the reclusive artist’s caretaker and an art publisher of taking advantage of Indiana and producing forgeries — accusations the pair denied. That led to more claims and counter claims.

Under the agreement, Morgan dropped its lawsuit against the estate and Indiana’s caretaker but not against the art publisher.

It also doesn’t resolve a case brought by Maine’s attorney general, who claims the estate paid excessive legal fees during litigation. That lawsuit contends $3.7 million paid to four law firms and about $400,000 collected by the estate’s personal representative were excessive.

Indiana created a lifetime of art but he’s best known for LOVE, spelled with two letters to a line and with a tilted “O.”

It’s been transformed into sculptures around the world, and was featured on a U.S. postage stamp.

The Associated Press