We recently noticed the following application: a bottle in the Mondrian painting style and with the name Mondrian. This bottle directly refers to the famous painter, in style and in name. Is this allowed? After all, this bottle free rides on the fame of this painter.
The EUIPO assesses trademarks based on the legal requirements such as distinctive character. In this case, the EUIPO found this a distinctive trademark. Mondrian does not say anything about vodka, the product for which this trademark was filed. This would probably have been different if Mondrian had been filed for painting supplies or for books (a book can be about Mondrian, which is why Mondrian would describe the content of this book). In the examination process, the EUIPO does not assess whether this mark infringes the trademark rights of others. Only when a trademark proprietor files an opposition, the EUIPO will look into this matter.
In the end, it is up to Mondrian’s heirs to register the name as a trademark in order to prevent abuse. If Mondrian is not registered and the image is not a reproduction of a painting or work by Mondrian either, the heirs have little in their hands to object. All the more reason for famous people to protect their name as a trademark.
HEEFT UW MERK AANDACHT NODIG?
Wilt u meer informatie over de bescherming van uw merk?