Fearless Girl’s reign as one of the 21st century’s top cultural icons seems all but assured, but the legal dispute between the sculptor who designed the statue and the investment firm that sponsored it shows no sign of stopping.In the latest development last month, Judge Gregory H. Woods of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York dealt a victory to the artist, Kristen Visbal, denying a motion for dismissal by investment management firm State Street Global Advisors (SSGA).Visbal claims the firm interfered with her contract, infringed upon her copyright and committed fraud by not giving her proper attribution for the work at all times, amounting to an attempt to “rob her of making a living from her art.” These accusations form part of a counterclaim in response to a breach-of-contract lawsuit State Street filed on Valentine’s Day 2019 seeking to forbid Visbal from selling Fearless Girl replicas to “unauthorized buyers.”The bronze statue of a young girl with her hands on her hips, head tilted defiantly upward against the Charging Bull of Wall Street appeared overnight in New York’s Bowling Green park nearly two and a half years ago.She instantly became an international sensation, a call to action for greater gender equality and female leadership in companies, but also a target for mockery—and a major source of potential revenue for both Visbal and SSGA."Now that [Ms. Visbal] has filed an amended pleading with the Court, we will soon file a renewed motion to dismiss the counterclaims."
The topic, trending on Twitter, puts a spotlight on the pay disparity between women and men.While more attention is being focused on the inequality in pay, not every company is putting its money where its mouth is.A report published Tuesday by investment-research company Morningstar said that State Street Global Advisors, the New York company that commissioned the Fearless Girl statue, voted against a number of gender diversity initiatives.The bronze Fearless Girl statue, created by Kristen Visbal and installed in 2017, stood defiantly in front of the Charging Bull in Manhattan's Financial District.It became a tourist attraction and was seen by some as a symbol for women in leadership.Morningstar's report found that State Street's Gender Diversity fund, known as SHE, didn't have a voting record in line with its stated goals of "closing the gender gap" by "strengthening gender diversity and inclusion practices across corporate America."
The 'fearless Girl' statue which stares down Wall Street’s famous “Charging Bull” has generated a huge amount of media attention since it was installed last month and, in addition to serving as a feminist symbolism, the sculpture has generated millions in free advertising.Kristen Visbal’s bronze statue became an instant sensation upon its unveiling on International Women’s Day.Since then hundreds of tourists and passersby have stopped to take photos with the girl before posting them to social media.According Bloomberg all the tweets, selfies and news reports mentioning the artwork has resulted in $4.7m in free advertising for the financial firm that commissioned it, State Street Global Advisors.Analysis from Apex Marketing found that the statue earned the firm almost 70% of financial services media the next day and generated around $393,000 in free social media advertising, $3.1m in free TV advertising and $3.7m worth of free online and print news advertising.Much of the media attention stemmed from controversy around the statue and calls for its removal.