The Real Deal New York

Art dealer Tony Shafrazi sued for $1M in unpaid rent

Landlord Schur Management claims Shafrazi stayed on premises 13 months after eviction

January 08, 2016 02:50PM
By Rey Mashayekhi

115 Wooster Street

From left: Tony Shafrazi (credit: Michael Anderson) and 115 Wooster Street in Soho

This ain’t a pretty picture.

Art dealer Tony Shafrazi is facing yet another lawsuit from his ex-landlord in Soho, who claims Shafrazi owes nearly $1 million in unpaid rent accrued over 13 months during which he refused to vacate the premises.

Schur Management, the owner of 115 Wooster Street, where Shafrazi lived in a $14,500-per-month loft, claims the art dealer remained in his loft for more than a year following the expiration of his lease in September 2014, according to a lawsuit filed Friday in New York State Supreme Court.

The landlord previously filed suit against Shafrazi – who is credited with popularizing artist Jean-Michel Basquiat – in October 2014 seeking to remove him from the premises, with a ruling in Schur Management’s favor last July.

But Shafrazi allegedly didn’t leave 115 Wooster Street until October 2015 – 13 months after the expiration of the lease – and the landlord now claims it is entitled to roughly $1 million in unpaid rent, late fees and legal fees.

Kevin Smith of law firm Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, which is representing Bronx-based Schur in the matter, confirmed the lawsuit. Representatives for Shafrazi did not return requests for comment.

Shafrazi filed his own $8 million suit against Schur in October 2014, accusing the landlord of fraud and breach of contract, according to the New York Post. The art dealer claimed he put more than $1 million of his own money into repairs and renovations at the Soho building — though that suit was subsequently dropped, according to Smith.

Shafrazi lived in the six-story building at 115 Wooster for more than 20 years, according to the Post, and was cordial with the property’s management – until the previous landlord’s nephew took over operations at the building and ordered the art dealer to vacate.

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