Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Aviva Drescher Sued for $620,500 Over Unreturned Paintings

There's a reason she's a reality TV star and not an art curator.

An artist is suing one of “The Real Housewives of New York City” for failing to return five loaned paintings, scuttling the sale of one artwork and holding the rest up for ransom.

Aviva Drescher, 45, who starred in the show's previous two seasons — but has been fired this month, according to a report — is painted as greedy and grabby by Matthew Satz.

The Hamptons-based artist claims he installed the works at Drescher's Upper West Side home in June 2013 free of charge in the hope of some exposure.

A collector who saw them agreed a couple of months ago to pay $50,000 for a Pink Smoke Painting, according to papers filed Friday in Manhattan Supreme Court.

But the art remains hanging in the Dreschers residence as the TV blonde and her husband Reid Drescher, CEO of an investment banking firm, spent weeks haggling for a commission, the papers say.

“It's shocking that the Dreschers stooped to the level that they had and tried to extract a payment from Mr. Satz,” said the artist's lawyer, Andrew Weinstein.

Aviva Drescher contended that Satz was allowed to pick up the works by last Friday but did not — and she went on to pooh-pooh the painter.
“The guy is a crazy artist. He works out of his basement,” she told the Daily News. “He's not operating on a full deck.”

Weinstein retorted in the legal filing that no commission was ever agreed upon and that the Dreshcers first asked for $10,000 to return the art, then went down to $5,000, finally agreeing to let Satz collect the pieces if he pays them $2,500 and leaves two small works.

The lawsuit is asking for over $620,500 in compensation and punitive damages.
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