The Real Deal New York

Chetrit sued over $250K painting in Chelsea Hotel

Family of late Larry Rivers claims art was loaned to hotel; landlord says it was rent payment
July 30, 2014 08:00AM

The Larry Rivers Foundation, an organization dedicated to promoting the works of the late artist, is suing the new owner of the Chelsea Hotel, Joseph Chetrit.

Rivers, a painter and musician known as the “Godfather of Pop Art,” died in 2002. His sister,  Joan Gordon, and her son Steven Rivers, who lead the foundation, claim that Chetrit and the hotel have not returned a painting by Rivers that is said to be worth $250,000.

The artist lived in the hotel in the 1960s — along with Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin and others — and loaned the eight by six foot canvas in 1998. The hotel is claiming that he did so in lieu of rent.

Before his death, Rivers declined to donate the painting to the hotel. [NYP] — Claire Moses