Andy Warhol's estate is behind an "insidious" conspiracy to monopolize the authentication and sale of the late artist's work, according to a complaint in Federal Court. Susan Shaer claims that the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board routinely defaces authentic Warhol artworks with a "DENIED" stamp, thereby creating "artificial scarcity" and inflating the value of the art owned by the foundation.
By falsely declaring certain works as inauthentic, the board can "systematically exclude Warhol from the marketplace," Shaer says in her 43-page complaint.
Shaer says that without the board's intervention, independent sales would compete with the foundation's holdings in auctions and private sales.
Shaer says board members feel "free to abuse the authentication process in pursuit of their naked self interest."
The board's stamp of approval is necessary for anyone in the world to sell a Warhol work, which allows it to wield "disproportionate power over the Warhol market," according to the complaint.
Read more HERE.
Rather a delicious irony for those familiar with the broader message behind much of Warhol's work.