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Kim Kardashian sued by artist Donald Judd’s estate over her allegedly knockoff furniture

Kim Kardashian is being sued by late artist Donald Judd’s foundation over claims her minimalist office furniture was designed by Judd

Meredith Clark
New York
Thursday 28 March 2024 17:06 GMT
Related: Kim Kardashian gives a tour of her 30,000-piece wardrobe

Kim Kardashian has been sued by late artist Donald Judd’s estate over allegedly false claims she made about the furniture featured in her SKKN by Kim office tour.

Back in 2022, the billionaire businesswoman gave fans a tour of her skincare brand headquarters, which was curated by West Hollywood interior designer Clements Design. The neutral-toned workspace featured several minimalist pieces, including triangular chairs facing her desk, a wooden bookshelf lining the wall, and a grey loveseat at the opposite end of the office.

The standout piece of furniture seen in her office tour was a wooden table she said was designed by Donald Judd. “These Donald Judd tables are really amazing,” Kardashian said in the video, adding that they “totally blend in with the seats”.

However, a new lawsuit filed by the Judd Foundation on 27 March has claimed that the tables and chairs in the video were “knockoff” versions allegedly produced by Clements Design to resemble those designed by the late artist.

The foundation is suing Kardashian for false endorsement and the company for trademark and copyright infringement, the New York Times reported.

According to the lawsuit, which was filed in the US District Court for the Central District of California, the non-profit organisation claimed that Kardashian, 43, was “well aware” the pieces were inauthentic. The foundation accused Clements Design of reproducing two original Judd pieces: the $90,000 La Mansana Table 22, and Chair 84, which cost $9,000 each. In the last 15 years, the foundation stated only three authentic copies of the tables have been sold.

The Judd Foundation said the tables and chairs “appear identical” to Judd’s “signature” design of “flat, rectangular” work, while also claiming the pieces were “poor quality imitations”. The organisation pointed to an invoice from Clements Design, according to the lawsuit, in which the company described its furniture as “in the style of Donald Judd” and included an image owned by the Judd Foundation of the authentic dining set.

The lawsuit went on to detail how the foundation contacted Kardashian about the furniture three days after the office tour was posted on her YouTube channel; the video was subsequently taken down after the lawsuit was filed. A spokeswoman for Kardashian responded to the complaint, according to the lawsuit, saying they were “incredibly sorry for any inconvenience this has caused the foundation” and offering to “update the video caption with a retraction”.

Instead, the Judd Foundation wanted the video deleted, the table and chairs “recycled”, and for Kardashian to issue a public statement. Her representatives countered with an offer to make a social media post in which she supported the foundation, the lawsuit stated.

Following the filing, Clements Design issued a statement on Wednesday saying there were “obvious key differences” between Kardashian’s office table and the original Judd table. The design company said it felt “blindsided” by the lawsuit after making efforts to “resolve this issue amicably”.

Clements Design claimed the Judd Foundation was “unwilling to settle on reasonable terms,” adding: “These claims have absolutely no merit.”

Meanwhile, Megan Bannigan - a lawyer representing the Judd Foundation - maintained that the allegedly knockoff table and chairs were “lower quality” than Judd’s furniture. “We don’t want to be mixed up with Kim Kardashian,” Bannigan told the New York Times. “We respect what she does, but we don’t want to be involved with this.”

The Independent has contacted representatives for Kardashian and Clements Design for comment.

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