NEW YORK — Can’t nobody tell me nothing? A federal judge told rapper Lil Nas X and the company that is marketing his “Satan Shoes” to stop.
On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Eric Komitee approved Nike’s request for a temporary restraining order against MSCHF Product Studio Inc., the art collective that collaborated with the “Old Town Road” singer to create a pair of sneakers containing “one drop” of human blood, The Wall Street Journal reported.
The company used modified Nike Air Max 97s to create the red-and-black footwear, which contained satanic symbols, CBS News reported. Six workers at Brooklyn, New York-based MSCHF offered their blood for the new line of sneakers, The New York Times reported. Other quirky products offered by the company have included toaster-shaped bath bombs and rubber-chicken bongs, the newspaper reported.
A drop of blood was mixed in with ink that fills an air bubble in the sneaker, one of MSCHF’s founders, Daniel Greenberg, told the Times in an email.
When asked who collected the blood, Greenberg told the newspaper, “Uhhhhhh yeah hahah not medical professionals we did it ourselves lol.”
The motion to restrain was approved in the Eastern District for New York, according to The Wall Street Journal. Nike filed a trademark lawsuit against MSCHF on Monday, claiming it had not authorized the product. Nike added that the Satanic association from the sneakers would dilute its trademarks, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Lil Nas X took the music world by storm in 2019 when “Old Town Road” stayed at No. 1 on the Billboard charts for a record 19 weeks. On March 26, Lil Nas X released “Montero (Call Me By Your Name).” Part of the music video portrays Lil Nas X, who is gay, being seduced in the Garden of Eden, sliding down a pole from heaven to hell and twerking on Satan’s lap, according to ABC News. In three days, the music video amassed over 38 million views on YouTube.
In a written statement Thursday, MSCHF called the Satan Shoes “artwork” and said Nike did not file a lawsuit against the company in 2019 when it modified another pair of Nike sneakers and called them Jesus Shoes. Those shoes contained holy water, the Times reported.
“As a manifested speculative artwork Jesus Shoes conflates celebrity collab culture and brand worship with religious worship into a limited edition line of art objects,” MSCHF said in a written statement. “Last week’s release of the Satan Shoes, in collaboration with Lil Nas X, was no different.”
“Nike filed a trademark infringement and dilution complaint against MSCHF today related to the Satan Shoes,” Nike told CBS News in a statement Thursday. “We don’t have any further details to share on pending legal matters. However, we can tell you we do not have a relationship with Lil Nas X or MSCHF. The Satan Shoes were produced without Nike’s approval or authorization, and Nike is in no way connected with this project.”