The complex nature of industrial design, which combines functional and aesthetic elements, allows for different modes of protection, with cumulative, separate or partially overlapping regimes applicable according to different legal systems. The legal framework is rapidly changing, especially in Europe where the principle of cumulation of a special sui generis regime for protecting industrial design with copyright rules has been established. Over the last decade, the national courts of some Member States construed the “cumulative regime” with a peculiar meaning, while other courts enforced design rights in line with the interpretation given by the Court of Justice of the European Union. The copyright/design interface is presented here to a wider, non-specialist audience, taking as a starting point the notion of industrial design derived from design studies, on the borderline between art and science. Other challenges which will need to be confronted urgently over the coming years are also raised.
The interdisciplinary English language journal Art and Law aims to gather outstanding contributions to the fascinating debate at the intersection of art and law. The focus of the journal involves all the aspects (philosophical, juridical, sociological, technological and cultural) characterizing the relationship between art and law. Each issue will be intended as a monographic volume devoted to a specific topic.
As from 2018 the journal is published in 4 issues a year.