Billie Eilish merch used stolen anime art, website removed


It’s easy for people to make the artwork of others their own, especially in the world of anime fans.

Billie Eilish, along with European streetwear fashion label Siberia Hills, have been accused of doing just that. Eilish and the brand have dropped their new merchandise collaboration, called Love Live! Eilish shared a link to purchase the product and people quickly noticed that the character in the art was Nozomi Tojo, and the art itself appeared to have been made by popular artist Makoto Kurokawa.

Siberia Hills posted a statement on Instagram on Saturday apologizing for using the art.

“To talented artist Mr. M_Qurokawa, we apologize for taking your illustrations for our business collaboration with Billie Eilish,” the company wrote. “Billie and her team weren’t aware that we were using your art, they just believed in the product.”

The clothing company went on to explain that anyone who made a purchase would be reimbursed.

The use of the stolen art was first reported by Twitter user @nestuur.

“Billie Eilish sells stolen Nozomi art in her merch, what is it. It’s peak 2019, in a bad way,” @nestuur wrote in a tweet that has since amassed thousands of retweets.

The collaboration included two hoodies and a t-shirt, all with a graphic of anime girls in four different poses. “Billie” is written in Katakana.

Many were quick to point out that Siberia Hills had allegedly stolen art before.

“This ‘brand’ Siberia Hills are creators of pirated products who steal written materials and sell them for exorbitant prices, which is illegal under US and Japanese copyright laws,” the user wrote. from Twitter @NoiresDusk.

Eilish has yet to comment publicly on the matter., but his original tweet promoting the product is now gone and all of the product has been taken off the website.

Correction: This article has been updated to reflect that Katakana is not a language.


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* First published: August 11, 2019, 9:41 a.m. CDT

Elizabeth VanMetre

Elizabeth VanMetre is a Wyoming-based reporter. She is a graduate of Columbia Journalism School and her work has been featured on ETOnline, the New York Daily News, Yahoo Travel, and more. She hosts a local morning show in Wyoming.

Elizabeth VanMetre

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