Applied-Art Doctrine Law and Legal Definition

In Copyright law, the applied-art doctrine says that a pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work which has an inherent use regardless of its appearance, and which is an expressive work regardless of its utility, may qualify for copyright protection. Some of examples of the doctrine are bookends, lamps and sundials. This doctrine is also known as the useful article doctrine. The applied-art doctrine holds that a work is un-copyrightable if it is used for solely utilitarian purposes. Contrary to applied art, industrial designs are not copyrightable even if, they may be protected by design patents.