The rapper claims Mannion, who shot the iconic cover for Reasonable Doubt, is exploiting his likeness without permission
JAY-Z is suing Jonathan Mannion in a lawsuit concerning the use of his likeness in photographs sold and used by the hip-hop photographer, as TMZ reports and Pitchfork can confirm via court documents. The rapper is accusing Mannion, who shot the iconic cover of his debut album Reasonable Doubt, of “exploiting” his name and image “without [his] consent.” He’s seeking an injunction requiring Mannion and his camp to cease using his name and likeness, as well as “compensatory damages, consequential damages, lost profits, and/or disgorgement of Mannion’s profits,” among other damages.
The complaint, filed today (June 15) in a California federal court, reads: “Mannion’s use of JAY-Z’s name, likeness, identity, and persona was, and is, in conscious disregard of JAY-Z’s right of privacy and publicity, and of his exclusive right to control the use and exploitation of his name, likeness, identity, and persona.” The lawsuit accuses Mannion of thereby violating section 3344 of the California Civil Code, as well as JAY-Z’s common law privacy rights.
When reached by Pitchfork, attorneys for JAY-Z offered no comment. A legal representative for Jonathan Mannion offered the following statement to Pitchfork:
Mr. Mannion has created iconic images of Mr. Carter over the years, and is proud that these images have helped to define the artist that Jay-Z is today. Mr. Mannion has the utmost respect for Mr. Carter and his body of work, and expects that Mr. Carter would similarly respect the rights of artists and creators who have helped him achieve the heights to which he has ascended.
We are confident that the First Amendment protects Mr. Mannion’s right to sell fine art prints of his copyrighted works, and will review the complaint and respond in due course.