Advertisement

We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Anthony Devlin/PA Archive/Press Association Images
Che

Artist launches bid for legal rights on iconic Che Guevara image

Renowned artist Irish Jim Fitzpatrick is attempting to secure royalties on the world-famous work for the first time.

IRISH ARTIST JIM Fitzpatrick has a launched a legal campaign to secure the rights on his iconic image of Che Guevara.

Fitzpatrick has never earned a cent for his work depicting the controversial Argentine Marxist revolutionary, which has now become a familiar sight in popular culture used for an array of political causes – as well as being plastered on t-shirts and coffee cups across the world.

The artist’s image is based on a photograph taken by Cuban photographer Alberto Korda in March 1960. Korda never received any royalties for the photograph, which the Maryland Institute of Art called “the most famous photograph in the world and a symbol of the 20th century”, according to the BBC.

Fitzpatrick’s portrait has been named as number six in the world’s top ten iconic images, behind Christ and the Mona Lisa, by renowned art expert Dr Martin Kemp, reports the Irish Examiner.

On his website, the artist says: “The various posters of Che I produced were based on a photograph by a then unknown Cuban photographer plus the fact that I had met him, idolised him, and of course wanted to make sure he was never forgotten. I made all the Guevara images copyright free. That’s how it spread everywhere so quickly.”

Fitzpatrick now wishes to secure the rights so he can hand them over to Guevara’s family and the people of Cuba: “If some good can come of that through future money raised for hospitals and the likes, then I will be very happy indeed,” said Fitzpatrick.

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.