the law

The Nirvana Baby Is Now a Nirvana-Suing Man, Claiming Nevermind Art Is Porn

Photo: DGC

You may not know the name Spencer Elden, but you definitely know his tiny, buoyant, baby body. He’s the now-30-year-old infant featured swimming toward a dollar bill on the cover of Nirvana’s 1991 album Nevermind, and he filed a lawsuit yesterday claiming that the image “constituted child pornography.” According to Variety, Elden’s case that the famous album art is actually porn is built around an interpretation of the image that claims the dollar bill of it all “intentionally” frames the baby as a “sex worker” reaching for a tip. Elden is demanding $150,000 from defendants including Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, Courtney Love, and the managers of Kurt Cobain’s estate, as well as the album’s photographer and art director, and record companies involved with its release.

In the past, Elden has been game to re-create the cover on the album’s anniversaries, but in an interview with Time on the album’s 25th anniversary in 2016, he also expressed some feelings of violation regarding the phenomenon. “[When] I go to a baseball game and think about it: ‘Man, everybody at this baseball game has probably seen my little baby penis,’ I feel like I got part of my human rights revoked,” he told Time at the time.

The Nirvana Baby Claims Nevermind Art Is Porn, Sues Nirvana