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NYC Mayor Says ‘Fearless Girl’ Is ‘Staying Put,’ Despite Wall Street Bull Sculptor’s Objection

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The “fearless girl” statue will continue to face off against the Wall Street charging bull despite the bull sculptor’s threat to pursue legal measures to get rid of the competing artwork, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says.

Arthur Di Modica, the artist behind the bull that’s been seated on Bowling Green Plaza in Manhattan’s financial district neighborhood since 1989, claimed the statue of a young girl standing defiantly against the bull since International Women’s Day is nothing more than an “advertising trick.” However, de Blasio says the popular girl isn’t going anywhere.

“We wouldn’t move the Charging Bull statue if it offended someone,” the mayor tweeted Wednesday. “The Fearless Girl is staying put.”

Earlier in the day, he wrote, “Men who don’t like women taking up space are exactly why we need the Fearless Girl.”

de Blasio announced in March that the statue will remain on Wall Street until February 2018, at least. Over 28,000 people signed a petition to keep the statue.

“In her short time here, the Fearless Girl has fueled powerful conversations about women in leadership and inspired so many,” de Blasio said in a statement. “Now, she’ll be asserting herself and affirming her strength even after her temporary permit expires — a fitting path for a girl who refuses to quit.”

Di Modica, however, says that the statue now placed opposite his is nothing but an advertisement.

“That is not a symbol! That’s an advertising trick,” he told MarketWatch. “Women, girls, that’s great, but that’s not what that [bull sculpture] is. I put it there for art. My bull is a symbol for America. My bull is a symbol of prosperity and for strength.”

“The Charging Bull no longer carries a positive, optimistic message. Rather, it has been transformed into a negative force and a threat,” said Di Modica’s attorney, Norman Siegel, according to The Guardian. “Clearly, a deliberate choice was made to exploit and to appropriate the ‘Charging Bull’ through the placement of the ‘Fearless Girl’.”

The artist and his lawyer argued that the other statue should be moved to a different location where it didn’t hinge on Di Modica’s work.

“The work is incomplete without Mr. Di Modica’s Charging Bull, and as such it constitutes a derivative work,” Seigel said.

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MarketWatch also reports that Di Modica could take legal measures to remove the fearless girl statue from its current location.

The statue was originally placed as a publicity ploy in honor of International Women’s Day on behalf of McCann and State Street Global Advisers.

For the statue’s fans and admirers, it’s developed into something much more than that.

“[She] is standing up against something and we see her as a powerful image,” N.Y.C. tourist Holly Sargeant told AP. “She represents all the young women in the world that want to make a difference.”