PETALING JAYA, May 21 — Malaysian artist Izat Arif has received a warning from a representative of entrepreneur Datin Vivy Yusof over an image that was used without the fashion entrepreneur’s permission.
The artist who has exhibited his works in Ilham Gallery, is known for his multidisciplinary creations that combine drawings, sculptures and ready-made objects.
Izat took to Instagram last night to post what appeared to be a letter from Vivy’s lawyer requesting the image to be removed from his Instagram account.
The artist did not elaborate further but accompanied the post with the message: “All (accusations) of plagiarism are equal, but some (accusations) of plagiarism are more equal than others.”
Izat’s comment and artwork featuring Vivy purportedly points to the Fashion Valet and Duck scarves founder’s plagiarism allegations.
Just last month, Vivy and her popular Duck headscarf label was the subject of intense scrutiny after its new “Artsy Duck” collection was said to be uncannily similar to the designs of another local designer, Nia Atasha.
Nia who owns label Sleepy Llama expressed her disappointment on social media saying her 2018 collaboration with Soonaru which also featured an art studio photoshoot campaign bore an identical concept.
Social media users were quick to point out the similarities between Duck’s designs and Nia’s creations, which Vivy denied.
it’s v**y and du** again are we malaysians surprised by this??? pic.twitter.com/1T5d5OvPgi— JAWIDAH RAIHAN (@pxmpkin) April 28, 2020
Replying to Izat’s recent post, social media users slammed the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia businesswoman for infringing the artist’s creative freedom.
“@vivyyusof shame on you girl,” @ibnuishaque wrote.
“So childish. now anybody can censor anything! just send lawyers around to bully people,” @ihassan3 said.
“It’s sad that we have people who are so exposed and have access to freedom of speech, critical thinking and differing opinions, to have such conservative and imposing thoughts on creative censorship – hope you’re not disheartened in any way and keep making your art,” added @abbylatif.
Izat has since removed the image from his Instagram account.
This is not the first time Vivy and her company has come under fire for accusations of plagiarism.
In April 2019, Malaysian brand Ilham Echenta also accused Vivy’s Duck Group for copying its range turban designs.