Kaws exhibition at Marina Bay to resume after court lifts injunction

The Kaws:Holiday exhibition at The Float @ Marina Bay will now resume, after the court lifted an earlier order to stop the exhibition.

The interim injunction was lifted yesterday in the State Courts by District Judge Kow Keng Siong.

The 42m-long inflatable work by popular American artist Kaws - which was slated to go on display from last Saturday to Nov 21 - had been temporarily closed to the public, after the event's organiser, Hong Kong-based creative studio AllRightsReserved (ARR), was served an interim injunction.

This happened as non-profit organisation The Ryan Foundation (TRF) sued ARR, citing breach of intellectual property rights and breach of confidence. The foundation had been in talks with ARR in 2019 to make the exhibition happen in Singapore, but the negotiations eventually fell apart.

The interim injunction had ordered that the exhibition stop taking place. It also ordered that the sale and distribution of relevant merchandise relating to the exhibition, as well as all advertising and publicity, be stopped.

Representing TRF yesterday were its founder Ryan Su and Mr Giam Zhen Kai, both from OC Queen Street law firm.

ARR was represented by Mr Tan Tee Jim, Mr Christopher James de Souza, Mr Basil Lee and Mr Valen Lim of Lee & Lee. Mr Tan, a senior counsel, told The Straits Times that his clients are happy to be able to exhibit the well-known sculpture in Singapore.

The foundation's director Adrian Chan said in a statement after yesterday's hearing: "The interim injunction is a temporary one and we are happy that the public gets to enjoy the artwork."

The latest turn of events comes a day after Mr Su started contempt of court proceedings in the High Court against ARR and a string of other parties.

He had filed the application on Sunday evening, on the grounds that they had breached the earlier order to stop the exhibition and its related publicity events.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2021, with the headline 'Kaws exhibition at Marina Bay to resume after court lifts injunction'. Subscribe