Halsey Minor Tells the NY Times His Side of the Story
Today’s New York Times covers the dispute over Edward Hicks’s “Peaceable Kingdom.” Felicia Lee lays out two opposed timelines that converge in lawsuits, the one Sotheby’s has filed and the one Minor says he will file:
Reached by phone, Diana Phillips, a spokeswoman for Sotheby’s, said that Mr. Minor had told the auction house that he had not paid for the works because he was owed money by other parties and could not afford to. But Mr. Minor said in an interview on Thursday that he had not paid for the purchases because Sotheby’s had not disclosed its financial stake in the sale of “Peaceable Kingdom.”
Asked if he had the money to pay for the paintings, he said: “My net worth exceeds what’s owed by an order of magnitude. Their claim is preposterous.” Mr. Minor said that Sotheby’s filed the suit only after he asked it to send him papers documenting its precise economic interest in the sale of the work.
But Ms. Phillips said the auction house had fully complied with all consumer regulations involving such disclosures. “We’ve been talking with him for some time about trying to resolve this,” she said. “He told us that the sole reason he had not paid was because others had failed to meet their financial obligations to him.”
“It was only a few days ago that he brought up this issue of financial disclosure,” Ms. Phillips added. “His explanation is just not credible.”
The entrepreneur, 43, who founded the technology news Web site CNet.com in the early ’90s, said he planned a countersuit against Sotheby’s. “Am I going to sue?” he said. “Absolutely. All they did was beat me to the punch.”
Auction House Sues Buyer of Paintings (The New York Times)