The © MURAKAMI exhibt at the Brooklyn Museum opened in April with real Louis Vuitton handbags masquerading as fakes -- and will close Sunday amid a flurry of counterfeit coupons pretending to be genuine.
Filip Noterdaeme, the artist/activist and founder of the Homeless Museum of Art project, objects to the commercialization of culture in general and the presence of a Vuitton boutique at the Brooklyn Museum in particular. The tiny boutique at the heart of the exhibit, which carries the products of the Takashi Murakami/Marc Jacobs collaboration for Vuitton, is itself a provocative commentary on Murakami's "super flat" integration of art and commerce -- and it apparently succeeded in provoking Noterdaeme, who has distributed hundreds of fake "discount" flyers. While the ad only suggests asking for a discount, the intent is "to confer to museum visitors the absurdity of a bluntly commercial enterprise infiltrating an art museum." And maybe to generate a bit of conflict at the cash register.
Interestingly, Noterdaeme avoided reproducing the LV logo or signature toile, perhaps in an effort to avoid trademark liability. But would the First Amendment shield him against a claim of tortious interference with business activity? Possibly -- but when taunting Vuitton, Noterdaeme would be well advised to send up a Hail Mary.