Salt Bae is sued for $ 5 million by a Brooklyn artist who created a mural of the chef’s signature pose

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The first page of the case of Hicks and his lawyers


Salt Bae, the butcher who went viral on social media and started a food empire of his notoriety, faces $ 5 million lawsuit by salty artist for unauthorized use of works of art presenting the signature of the restorer.

Williams Hicks, a Brooklyn-based artist known for his stenciled paintings and murals, filed a lawsuit against Salt Bae – real name Nusret Gökçe – in District Court for the Southern District of New York on Monday.

The lawsuit alleges that after Gökçe commissioned Hicks to make several pieces for its restaurants in Miami, New York, Doha and Dubai, Salt Bae used Hicks’ graphics for menus, labels, restaurant signs and more .

Williams Hicks, a Brooklyn-based artist known for his stenciled paintings and murals, filed a lawsuit against Salt Bae – real name Nusret Gökçe (pictured) – in District Court for the Southern District of New York on Monday.

The first page of the case of Hicks and his lawyers

The first page of the case of Hicks and his lawyers

The “unauthorized distribution” of the artwork resulted in loss of income as Gökçe never applied for a license for it, according to the lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit, Hicks and Joseph Iurato were commissioned to create the artwork in September 2017 for Gökçe’s Nusr-and Miami steakhouse. The artwork consisted of “an original vectorized patterned work” and an “original stencil painting depicting” Gökçe in his signature pose, the costume says.

Following the completion of the Miami piece, an additional order for artwork in Nusr-and New York followed, followed by pieces commissioned from Nusr-and Doha in November 2018 and Nusr-and Dubai in February 2019. , indicates the costume.

According to the lawsuit, Hicks and Joseph Iurato were commissioned to create the artwork in September 2017 for Gökçe's Nusr-and Miami steakhouse.  An additional piece was made in New York

According to the lawsuit, Hicks and Joseph Iurato were commissioned to create the artwork in September 2017 for Gökçe's Nusr-and Miami steakhouse.  An additional piece was made in New York

According to the lawsuit, Hicks and Joseph Iurato were commissioned to create the artwork in September 2017 for Gökçe’s Nusr-and Miami steakhouse. An additional piece was made in New York

Nusr-and Doha

Nusr-and Doha

Nusr-and Dubai

Nusr-and Dubai

Gökçe and the defendants ordered parts from Nusr-and Doha in November 2018 and from Nusr-and Dubai in February 2019, the lawsuit says.

Hicks found that the defendants were “engaging in widespread and unauthorized distribution” of the work in early 2020, noting that the images quickly began to appear in storefronts, digital signs, menus, wipes and bags to take away from restaurants’ Nusr- and Steakhouses and Saltbae Burger. in New York, Dubai and Istanbul ”.

The lawsuit says Hicks sent Gökçe a letter in April 2020 demanding that they “immediately cease and desist” from any further use of the artwork. But rather than comply with the request, Gökçe began using other graphics in Doha, D Maris Bay, Turkey, Boston, Dallas and several locations in Istanbul, according to the lawsuit.

Images of the artwork are prominently displayed in shop windows and through the main entrances to the Turkish chef’s restaurants. The artwork has also been seen on signage, uniforms, menus, take-out bags, table signs, wipes, stickers, brand identity, consumer products, merchandise and other media. marketing, says the lawsuit.

Unauthorized copies of the artwork also appeared on advertisements for Nusr-et steakhouses and Saltbae Burger restaurants, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit notes that current social media icons, profile pictures and even their online ordering platform use copies of the unauthorized work.

Hicks found the defendants were `` engaging in widespread and unauthorized distribution '' of the work in early 2020, the lawsuit says.

Hicks found the defendants were `` engaging in widespread and unauthorized distribution '' of the work in early 2020, the lawsuit says.

Hicks found that the defendants were “engaging in widespread and unauthorized distribution” of the work in early 2020, the lawsuit says.

Hicks sent a letter to Gökçe in April 2020 demanding that they `` immediately cease and desist '' from any further use of the artwork.  But rather than comply with demand, Gökçe began using other graphics in locations in Doha, D Maris Bay, Turkey, Boston (pictured), Dallas and several locations in Istanbul, according to the trial.

Hicks sent a letter to Gökçe in April 2020 demanding that they `` immediately cease and desist '' from any further use of the artwork.  But rather than comply with demand, Gökçe began using other graphics in locations in Doha, D Maris Bay, Turkey, Boston (pictured), Dallas and several locations in Istanbul, according to the trial.

Hicks sent a letter to Gökçe in April 2020 demanding that they “immediately cease and desist” from any further use of the artwork. But rather than comply with demand, Gökçe began using other graphics in locations in Doha, D Maris Bay, Turkey, Boston (pictured), Dallas and several locations in Istanbul, according to the trial.

wipes

wipes

napkins

napkins

The artwork has also been seen on signage, uniforms, menus, take-out bags, table signs, wipes, stickers, branding, consumer products, merchandise and other marketing materials. , indicates the trial.

From February 2021, Gökçe and restaurants even began selling products that included flavored gourmet salts and steak seasonings that also included unauthorized copies of the artwork on their packaging, the lawsuit argues.

From February 2021, Gökçe and restaurants even began selling products that included flavored gourmet salts and steak seasonings that also included unauthorized copies of the artwork on their packaging, the lawsuit argues.

From February 2021, Gökçe and restaurants even began selling products that included flavored gourmet salts and steak seasonings that also included unauthorized copies of the artwork on their packaging, the lawsuit argues.

And from February 2021, Gökçe and restaurants even began selling products that included flavored gourmet salts and steak seasonings that also included unauthorized copies of the artwork on their packaging, the lawsuit argues. .

The products were even marketed at Gulfood 2021, an annual food and drink exhibition held in Dubai. Salt Bae’s booth at the exhibit even included a “prominent large printed graphic,” according to the costume.

In addition to monetary compensation, Hicks also seeks an injunction and “other remedies that the Court considers just and appropriate.”

The artwork is visible on a take-out bag for the restaurant

The artwork is visible on a take-out bag for the restaurant

The artwork is visible on a take-out bag for the restaurant

The lawsuit notes that current social media icons, profile photos and even their online ordering platform use copies of the unauthorized work.

The lawsuit notes that current social media icons, profile photos and even their online ordering platform use copies of the unauthorized work.

The lawsuit notes that current social media icons, profile photos and even their online ordering platform use copies of the unauthorized work.

The beef comes less than two years after Salt Bae paid a $ 230,000 settlement to four waiters who accused him of firing them from his Manhattan steakhouse for asking about tips.

Gökçe agreed to the settlement the day before a lawsuit with the National Industrial Relations Council arbitrator. Four former employees of Nusr-Et Steakhouse New York filed a complaint against the Turkish chef in January 2019.

Onur Usluca, 27, Yunus Delimehmet, 36, Suleyman Kucur, 51, and Batuhan M. Yunkus, 30, said they faced unfair dismissal, alleging they were fired after starting wondering how the tip pool was divided.

The juicy drama – or the fact that its New York joint is dubbed New York’s worst restaurant – hasn’t stopped Salt Bae from looking to grow even more.

The products were even marketed at Gulfood 2021, an annual food and drink exhibition held in Dubai.  Salt Bae's booth at the exhibit even included a `` prominent large printed graphic, '' according to the costume.

The products were even marketed at Gulfood 2021, an annual food and drink exhibition held in Dubai.  Salt Bae's booth at the exhibit even included a `` large, prominently printed graphic, '' according to the costume.

The products were even marketed at Gulfood 2021, an annual food and drink exhibition held in Dubai. Salt Bae’s booth at the exhibition even included a “prominent large printed graphic,” according to the costume.

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