In the wake of a lawsuit filed against her by State Street Global Advisors, Kristen Visbal, the Lewes sculptor behind the iconic Fearless Girl sculpture in New York City, said she finds herself in exactly the same situation as Fearless Girl against Charging Bull, the well-known Wall Street bull sculpture.
A lone artist from Delaware and sole owner of the copyright to Fearless Girl, Visbal said she has faced off against the mammoth bully SSGA worth $2.7 trillion with a Go Fund Me campaign and the mantra Fearless Girls Won’t Be Bullied.
State Street Global Advisors has blocked use of the figure for nearly two-and-a-half years. Visbal said this imposes on her freedom of speech to share the corporate gender diversity studies so closely associated with the work, which uphold the wisdom of gender collaboration.
Visbal doggedly presses on with the conviction that Fearless Girl, created for women and wholly embraced by the world, cannot be owned by any one company and used as a brand. Visbal, who has remained silent in order to ensure the work remains untarnished, states now she created Fearless Girl on behalf of the world, and it must be used to champion women’s causes.
Visbal now focuses on the broader principles behind the studies, demonstrating how gender collaboration in any arena results in better decisions. To fuel her legal fight to use Fearless Girl on behalf of society, Visbal established her GoFundMe at www.gofundme.com/f/fearless-girls-wont-be-bullied.
A separate suit was filed against her in February in an attempt to block another company from unveiling her work in Melbourne, Australia. The Australian court ruled in favor of the unveiling. Fearless Girl bronze reproductions stand at Federal Square in Melbourne, in front of the Parliament building in Oslo, in front of the New York and London stock exchanges, and in Maryland at St. Timothy’s Girls School whose students hail from 27 different countries.
Visbal participated in Mujeres Que Inspiran, the Women Who Inspire event, in Buenos Aires. She also delivered an informal speech to women of finance at the Argentine Stock Exchange and gave a speech at Los Rasales School for Girls in Montevideo, Uruguay. UN representatives and young girls painted with gold paint to mimic the Fearless Girl sculpture attended the speech in Uruguay. Ferrere Law donated funds in exchange for Visbal’s speech.
Moved by how South America has embraced the sculpture, Visbal regrets that she has been prevented from freely attaching the Fearless Girl name and image to events which uphold the messages behind the work – chiefly, the empowerment of women for greater gender collaboration resulting in better decisions and improved environment.