Intellectual Property Law

Intellectual Property Law

Works of artistic craftsmanship comprise the last ? but admittedly, the most difficult ? part of the category of artistic works. Many items or artefacts might be called works of craftsmanship. Jewellery made to a special design, furniture, clothing or cutlery can all be called works of craftsmanship. The Act (CDPA 1988) offers no definition of this term, but, through the inclusion of the word ?artistic?, makes it clear that some artistic quality is required if a work of craftsmanship is to attract copyright protection.? (Holyoak and Torremans, Intellectual Property Law (7th Ed.), p223)
In the light of this statement, critically discuss the legal protection of works of artistic craftsmanship in copyright law.

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Section 1
"(1) Copyright is a property right which subsists…in the following descriptions of work-
(a) original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works,
(b) sound recordings, films, broadcasts, and
(c) the typographical arrangement of published editions.

(2)"copyright work" means a work of any of those descriptions in which copyright subsists."

Artistic Works – CDPA ss1, 4

"(1) …"artistic work" means-
(a) a graphic work, photograph, sculpture or collage, irrespective of artistic quality,
(b) a work of architecture being a building or a model for a building, or
(c) a work of artistic craftsmanship.
(2) In this Act- "building" includes any fixed structure…
"graphic work" includes-
(a) any painting, drawing, diagram, map, chart or plan, and
(b) any engraving, etching, lithograph, woodcut or similar work;
"photograph" means a recording of light or other radiation on any medium on which an image is produced or from which an image may by any means be reproduced, and which is not part of a film;
"sculpture" includes a cast or model made for purposes of sculpture."

Kenrick v Lawrence (1890) 25 QBD 99
Copyright protection afforded to a simple drawing of a hand marking a cross on a ballot paper. However, there was no infringement because the defendant had not copied the claimant?s drawing.
Artistic craftsmanship ? CDPA s4(1)(c)

Radley Gowns v Spyrou [1975] FSR 455
Dress designs could be works of artistic craftsmanship

*Hensher v Restawile [1975] RPC 31
Production furniture meant to sell well was not a work of artistic craftsmanship. There was no intention to create anything artistic and the furniture was not viewed objectively as being sufficiently aesthetic to justify protection under this heading.

Merlet v Mothercare [1986] RPC 115
A child?s ?baby cape? did not qualify as a work of artistic craftsmanship because it was created to be functional (protect the child from the weather) and, as a garment per se, did not have aesthetic merit.

Vermaat and Powell v Boncrest Ltd [2001] FSR 43
Vermaat and Powell v Boncrest Ltd (No.2) [2002] FSR 331
Patchwork bedspreads were not works of artistic craftsmanship.

Guild v Eskandar Ltd [2003] FSR 23
?Peasant dresses? although stylish were not artistic.

Burge v Swarbrick [2007] FSR 27
The shape of a boat was functional not artistic.

Lucasfilm Ltd v Ainsworth [2011] FSR 41 (Supreme Court)
Star Wars helmets were not artistic and could not be considered to be ?sculptures? within the CDPA.

Stokes, S., Copyright and the Reproduction of Artistic Works, [2003] EIPR 486
Clark, S., Lucasfilm Ltd and Others v Ainsworth and Another: the force of copyright protection for three-dimensional designs as sculptures or works of artistic craftsmanship, E.I.P.R. 2009, 31(7), 384-388
Thomson, J., Works of artistic craftsmanship: what is happening in this "formidable area of complexity"?, E.I.P.R. 2010, 32(3), 113-119
Lucasfilm Ltd v Ainsworth: Star Wars Episode VIII – The Sculpture Wars, E.I.P.R. 2010, 32(5), 251-254


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