Law: Sculpture Clash

Who owns artistic copyrights?

When Baltimore artist James Earl Reid created a life-size statue of a homeless family, he intended it for an event called the Pageant of Peace. Instead of bringing peace, however, the sculpture has sparked a bitter legal battle over the nation's copyright laws.

The case began in 1985 when the Washington-based Community for Creative Non-Violence (CCNV) commissioned Reid to craft the sculpture. The CCNV, an advocacy group for the homeless, agreed to pay $15,000 for materials and other costs, and Reid agreed to donate his services. But after the statue was completed, the two sides started sparring over the copyright --...

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