Thursday, December 18, 2014
Peter Max sued for $1 million over the sale of abandoned Corvette collection
If there was one story that amassed more attention than just about any story this year, it was Peter Max selling his dusty collection of 36 abandoned Corvettes, one from each year of production between 1953 to 1989.
Originating from a VH1 contest, Max, famed for producing eccentric artwork and caring little for cars outside of their ability to provide a canvas for future psychedelic projects, left his collection of 'Vettes unloved for 25 years in random New York storage garages.That is, until recently, when he decided enough was enough, and put the entire collection on the market.
The men responsible for selling the cars were Jeff Wallner and Kenneth Simmons. According to the New York Post, Max promised the pair a 10 percent commission, a figure they claim they never received. Wallner and Simmons are now suing the artist and his agent Larry Moskowitz for $1 million.
The suit goes on to allege that, despite selling artwork under his name, Max hasn't touched a paintbrush in years, using a group of "ghost-painters" to produce the paintings with Max merely signing his name on them -- something Max's attorney has denied.
As for the cars, the New York Daily News says Wallner and Simmons received a verbal agreement from Max to sell the Corvettes this past summer, but before they were able to market the collection, Moskowitz accepted an offer from an unknown buyer for all 36 machines in one sale. The pair claim to have emails and texts to prove that they were hired for the job.
And so while Peter Max's legendary Corvette collection looks set to end on a note as dirty as the cars in which he sold, the silver lining in all of this is that it appears the 36 VH1 'Vettes remain as one. Hopefully the new owner treats them better than Max did.