A $60 million collection of Andy Warhol silkscreens was damaged during last year’s highly acclaimed exhibit of the artist’s works in Italy, court papers say — and now their megarich owner wants Lloyd’s of London to pay $9 million lawsuit over damaged Warhol’s to compensate for their loss in value.
The Brant Foundation — run by Peter Brant, husband of supermodel Stephanie Seymour — sued the insurance giant in Manhattan Supreme Court Friday, saying Lloyd’s had taken premiums to insure the entire Warhol collection — including 12 Electric Chairs — but wasn’t abiding by the terms of the policy, which requires it to pay for repairs to damaged artwork and for “any depreciation suffered” as a result.
Without providing any details about where and how and when the collection was damaged, the court papers say merely that two of the Electric Chairs canvasses needed repairs — the red and the purple. 12 Electric Chairs depicts 12 separate chairs, each against a different colored background.
Court papers say the Brant Foundation, a Greenwich nonprofit that specializes in modern art, hired Amman Estabrook Conservation Associates which specializes in Warhols to repair the panels and appointed Stellan Holm, another Warhol and modern art expert, to determine the permanent impact of the repairs on the value of the collection.
Holm estimated a 15% drop in value or a loss of $9 million and the next step was for Lloyd’s to get an appraisal. Lloyd’s hired Victor Weiner of NYC but it did not share his report with Brant and so far has refused to pay for the repairs or the loss in value, according to court papers.
Brant is asking the courts to order Lloyd’s to abide by the terms of its policy.
There was no immediate response from Lloyd’s.
The 12 Electric Chairs were part of a billion dollar, 150 piece collection of Warhol works shipped to Italy in the fall of 2013 in what was billed as the first major monograph exhibition devoted to the father of Pop Art.
More than 225,000 saw it in Rome before it was moved to Milan in 2014.
The exhibit covered Warhol’s entire professional career, starting in the 1950s when he made his debut in commercial art and as a magazine illustrator. It included Liz, Marilyn, Campbell’s Soup, Coke, Brillo Boxes, Mao and the controversial Electric Chairs which were done in late 1960s.