Art law Fakes and copies USA

Knoedler hit by second lawsuit

The head of Tom Ford’s fashion firm accuses the New York gallery of selling him a fake Rothko

The recently closed gallery Knoedler & Company has been accused of selling another fake modernist painting in a second lawsuit filed on 28 March in Manhattan Federal Court.

Domenico De Sole, the chairman of Tom Ford’s fashion firm, and his wife Eleanore, are suing Knoedler for $25m, alleging that the gallery “induced” them to pay $8.3m in 2004 for a purportedly fake Mark Rothko painting, Untitled, 1956, that they say is “unsalable and worthless” based on forensic analysis.

A spokesman for the gallery issued a statement saying: “Any suggestion that Knoedler defrauded these or any other of its valued clients is baseless and irresponsible.” A lawyer for Knoedler’s former president, Ann Freedman, who is also named as a defendant in the suit, told the New York Post: “We're going to demonstrate beyond any doubt that this work is authentic”.

A London collector named Pierre Lagrange brought a suit against Knoedler three months ago, accusing the gallery of selling him a $17m fake Jackson Pollock painting. That suit came one day after the 165-year-old gallery closed its doors.

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