News, Culture & Society

David Mugrabi denied access to $100m art collection

  • Art dealer David Mugrabi is suing the Mana Contemporary storage facility in New Jersey for refusing to hand over more than 1,300 of their art pieces
  • Family claim they struck a deal with Mana in 2014 that allowed them to store their collection for free in exchange for referrals
  • But the book-keeper who knew about the deal left and Mana is now demanding the family back pay the $500,000 in storage fees 
  • Mugrabi’s family owns the largest private collection of Andy Warhol artworks

A renowned New York art dealer claims his family’s $100million collection is being held hostage by a storage facility over a payment dispute. 

David Mugrabi, whose family owns the largest private collection of Andy Warhol artworks, is suing the Mana Contemporary storage facility in New Jersey for refusing to hand over more than 1,300 of their pieces. 

A lawsuit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court on Monday claims the facility has stopped the Mugrabi family from accessing their art since last month. 

David Mugrabi (above with wife Libby), whose family owns the largest private collection of Andy Warhol artworks, is suing the Mana Contemporary storage facility in New Jersey for refusing to hand over more than 1,300 of their pieces

The Mugrabis claim they struck a deal with Mana back in 2014 that allowed them to store their collection for free in exchange for them referring the facility’s services to their clients.  

But the bookkeeper who knew about the deal left and Mana is now demanding the family back pay the $500,000 in storage fees they owe, according to the complaint obtained by Bloomberg.

The filing says three of the works currently at Mana have already been sold and two are due to be shown at ‘prestigious museums’. One of those artworks needs to delivered by October 27. 

The family claims Mana has brought their company to a standstill because one gallery has already cancelled a consignment given they can’t access the work.

The Mana Contemporary storage facility in New Jersey say the Mugrabi family owe them $500,000 in storage fees and that they have defaulted on payments for an extended period

The Mana Contemporary storage facility in New Jersey say the Mugrabi family owe them $500,000 in storage fees and that they have defaulted on payments for an extended period

The Mugrabis also allege that 11 of their pieces, which are worth millions, have been damaged while in Mana’s storage facility. 

Mana’s lawyer Fran Parker said the facility had ‘no choice’ and was only prohibiting access to the work until the debt is settled. 

‘(They) have defaulted on payment for an extended period of time and continue to owe an amount in excess of $500,000 (plus additional fees),’ she said.

The family’s collection includes works by Andy Warhol, Damien Hirst and other modern artists. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk