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The Dark Side

July Edition

Ivey-Selkirk Auctioneers – Since the beginning of this year, 77 complaints had been filed against this firm with the Better Business Bureau.  On April 7, the Missouri Attorney General Charles Koester announced that he has obtained a temporary restraining order prohibiting the 187 year old firm from doing any further business.  In another action, Koester asked the St. Louis County Circuit Court to permanently prohibit Malcolm Ivey from doing business in Missouri and to order him to pay customers for their merchandise, in addition to paying court costs. (Maine Antique Digest)

Knoedler – The hits just keep on coming.  It was recently revealed that ‘fake’ Jackson Pollock paintings that Rosales supplied to Knoedler, in fact, had a misspelled signature.  Instead of Pollock, it was signed Pollok (missing the letter ‘c’).  Now to be fair, I have to say that over the years I have seen genuine paintings by artists where the signatures were missing a letter; but in the case of a $280,000 piece, this should have raised a red flag.  Even more interesting is the fact that this particular piece was purchased by the former president of Knoedler, Ann Freedman, for her personal collection.

Rosales – One of the individuals involved in the Knoedler scandal was supposed to be sentenced in March, but that has been postponed until September. On March 14 her attorney filed a secret document with the Manhattan federal court – uh oh!  This is getting even more interesting.

Patrick Rooney – This 55 year old Colchester, Vermont, resident was charged, back in January, with stealing a 223 year old document from the Fletcher Free Library and trying to sell it to the University of Vermont’s Bailey-Howe Library for $175 (yes, that is correct … $175).  To top it all off, Mr. Rooney was found dead in February … the victim of an apparent suicide.  Humm … killing yourself over $175?  That seems pretty odd to me.   Well, now it appears that he was also being investigated for his involvement in more than 200 other stolen documents.  There are going to be a lot of unhappy purchasers!

About Alyssa T. Rehs

Alyssa Rehs is a fourth generation Art Dealer at her family owned art galleries, Rehs Galleries, Inc. and Rehs Contemporary Galleries, Inc., New York City, New York. She received an Art History degree from the University of Rhode Island in 2012 as well as interned at Christie’s Auction House, New York City. Using her art historian degree, gallery experience, and a summer spent working at the auction house, she has a well rounded understanding of the art market. Alyssa appreciates the market from multiple standpoints; art lover, art buyer and art seller!

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