Kruger Reigns Supreme

  Barbara Kruger , Untitled (I Shop Therefore I am) courtesy of Mary Boone Gallery

Barbara Kruger, Untitled (I Shop Therefore I am) courtesy of Mary Boone Gallery

 photo courtesy of Married to the Mob

photo courtesy of Married to the Mob

Looking at the blocked red and white logo of skate brand Supreme one can’t help but think of Barbara Kruger. And Kruger unabashedly admits her work implores the eye popping graphic elements of Mad Men Era advertisement to address issues of consumerism, sexism and other political ills. So let’s recap, Surpreme, a brand geared toward male consumers (ironically or lazily) used an artistic parody of consumerism that is often used to address social issues, mostly notably sexism, for the purpose of commercial branding. The conversation (or buck, if this were a Kruger piece) should stop here but enter the latest in this appropriation saga: Leah McSweeney’s ‘Supreme Bitch’ t-shirt for her girl street wear brand Married to the Mob. Supreme is suing Married to the Mob for the t-shirt which McSweeney defends is a parody on based in her belief that Supreme perpetuates sexism within it’s brand. McSweeney also argues that the ‘Supreme Bitch’ shirt has been in production since 2004 without issue from either Supreme or Kruger, for that matter. Only recently, since the skate brand visibility and popularity has increased, did Supreme feel it necessary to file a lawsuit for copyright infringement for the use of their ripped-off logo.

But what say you, the original, and in this case I am giving the title to Ms. Barbara Kruger, on the matter: “What a ridiculous clusterfuck of totally uncool jokers. I make my work about this kind of farce. I’m waiting on all of them to sue me for copyright infringement.” – Complex

Collette McGruder