Appeals court sides with Phillips in dispute with Chinese collector over auction of Gerhard Richter fighter jet painting

by AryanArtnews
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A long-standing legal battle between the Phillips auction house and Chinese collector Zhang Chang over Gerhard Richter’s 1963 fighter paintings. Düsenjäger, May finally end. In a March 3 decision, the New York Supreme Court’s Appeals side upheld the July 2021 decision dismissing Zhang’s allegations that Phillips violated the terms of the contract with the collector and resulted in unjust enrichment. ..

The Court of Appeals’ dismissal appears to mark the end of a twisted series of disputes and settlements, including Zhang’s effective acquisition of Richter’s paintings at two different Phillips auctions. in front. To understand how we arrived here, we need a summary of the epic of this art market proceeding.

In June 2015, Zhang purchased Francis Bacon’s diptych paintings. A study for the heads of Isabel Nicholas and George Dyer (1967) £ 12.1m for the sale of Christie’s in London. To pay for it, he secured a loan from another Chinese, Lin Sang, but when Chan couldn’t repay the money, Lin provided that he (Lin) became the owner. Bacon agreed to lend him more money. After that, Diptych was entrusted to Gagosian to cover the amount of money Zhang owes to Hayashi.

Apart from this, Zhang also bought Richter’s Düsenjäger It was sold in November 2016 at Phillips in New York for $ 24 million ($ 25.5 including fees) under a warranty contract with an auction house. Phillips paid $ 24 million to Richter’s shipper (believed to be the heir to the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen), but Chan paid that amount to the auction house. I couldn’t. It helps to secure some of the funds that Zhang was borrowing. Lynn filed his own proceedings to confirm Diptych’s ownership, seeking to secure his claim to Bacon and prevent Phillips from owning it.

In January 2018, Zhang Lin and Philips reached a settlement. Lynn abandoned his claim to Bacon and Phillips owned both Bacon and Richter’s paintings.Under the terms of the settlement, Zhang was given to Phillips to pay $ 26 million in unpaid debt to take ownership of Richter until July 2018. Düsenjäger..

But Zhang couldn’t pay $ 26 million in time, and in March 2019 Philips Düsenjäger Returning to market on a spring night sale of contemporary art in London, this time in contrast to the much lower estimate of $ 10 to $ 15 million (2016 estimate of $ 25 to $ 35 million). ). After the bidding war, it was sold to telephone bidders at a hammer price of £ 13.5 million (£ 15.5 million including fees). The purchaser revealed in the subsequent proceedings was none other than Zhang.

After paying Phillips unpaid debt and owning the paintings of Richter and Bacon, the collector filed a proceeding in the Court of Appeals that had just been upheld by the dismissal. Mr. Zhang argued that Phillips had been unjust enriched by violating the terms of the agreement and demanding that he pay a premium of about $ 2.6 million for the buyer who was trying to recover through the proceedings. In a decision following the controversial virtual hearing on February 9thThe Appeals Department confirmed the court’s July 2021 ruling, finding that Phillips “only exercised that right under a previous agreement” by reselling Richter.

Zhang and Phillips lawyers did not respond to requests for comment at the time of the press. “Phillips is pleased to find that the plaintiff’s allegations have had no merit and have been firmly dismissed by the court,” a spokesperson for the auction house said.

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