Can Mercedes publish pictures of public murals? It's suing artists in Detroit to find out

Sven Gustafson
Can Mercedes publish pictures of public murals? It's suing artists in Detroit to find out

Pending lawsuits by Mercedes-Benz against four artists who painted murals on a Detroit landmark could have ramifications for copyright law, as a federal judge this week allowed the suits to go forward. When their colorful murals on buildings in Detroit's Eastern Market appeared without their permission in the background of now-deleted Mercedes Instagram posts from January 2018 promoting the G-Class luxury SUV, the artists — Daniel Bombardier, Maxx Gramajo, James “Dabls” Lewis and Jeff Soto — objected to Mercedes, saying they should be compensated for the use of their works. The new G-Wagen had just debuted days before at the Detroit Auto Show.