French Artist Issues Statement About Claims Of BTS Being Inspired By His Work; Says He Considers It “A Tribute” Not “Plagiarism”
On April 18, French artist Bernard Faucon released a statement clarifying his claims of BTS being inspired by his work.
His statement is as follows:
I discovered BTS album ‘The Most Beautiful Moment of Life: Young Forever’ long after it was published, and I immediately felt a common inspiration with my past series of photographs: ‘Summer Camp.’
Since a long time, my photographs using mannequins, my ‘Love chambers’ or my ‘Scriptures’ inspire stage directors, designers, writers, and other artists all around the wor[l]d.
Inspiration and interpretation have always been at the center of creation and art. I suppose that inspiring various domains of art and culture is inherent to every profound and sensitive artwork.
As I have always said, I consider this probable inspiration from my work as a tribute, and certainly not as plagiarism or copyright infringement.
I love BTS, this album is beautiful, I feel honored to know that 40 years later, my photographs still inspire young artists of today.
Paris, April 18th 2019.
In February, it was reported that Bernard Faucon’s agency had asked Big Hit Entertainment on his behalf for an apology and compensation over suspicions of copyright infringement by BTS’s album artwork for “The Most Beautiful Moment in Life: Young Forever” and their music video for “Blood Sweat & Tears.” Images shared in the media (including those below) compared BTS’s works with his own.
Bernard Faucon has also stated on his website:
An article released Monday 25.02 in the Korean newspaper Hankyore incorrectly stated that I was accusing the K-Pop band BTS of plagiarism.
I discovered BTS album “The Most Beautiful Moment of Life: Young Forever” long after it was published, and I felt a common inspiration with my past series of photographs ‘Summer Camp.’
In an interview with a journalist from Hankyore about my current exhibition in Seoul, I answered about this feeling and made absolutely clear that I was considering a possible inspiration from my work as a tribute, and certainly not as plagiarism or copyright infringement.
I love BTS, this album is beautiful, I feel honored to know that 40 years later, my photographs still inspire other artists.
While it was reported in February that Bernard Faucon planned to hold a press conference in April in Korea to announce his position on the issue, his agency explained that he released a statement instead because he is preparing for a gallery opening in China on April 27.
In February, Big Hit Entertainment had responded by stating that the photos and clips from BTS’s album were not similar to Faucon’s works, and that because the parts that Faucon had claimed were similar were commonly used in filming, they were not subject to legal protection. At a press conference for BTS’s new mini album “Map of the Soul: Persona” on April 17, BTS was asked about the plagiarism accusations and Suga replied, “The legal team at our agency is dealing with the plagiarism issue. We have the same position as the agency.”