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A group of art collectors have filed a $40 million lawsuit against the Keith Haring Foundation for claiming that around 90 pieces that they believe were made by the late iconic artist are fakes.
The collectors say they purchased the art from Haring’s friends, but the foundation said in 2007 that they are fakes, reports Reuters. They claim that the foundation has refused to see further evidence that may prove their authenticity.
The Associated Press adds that the group also claims that the foundation has not been authenticating works since 2012. The foundation conspired to make less authenticated Haring works available in order to make them worth more, the group alleged.
Reuters reports that the lawsuit follows a Miami art show last year, in which the collectors put the work on display. However, the foundation filed a copyright lawsuit days later and the exhibition was pulled. The promoter did agree to pull the works, so none were sold. The collectors say that they would have made at least $40 million.
The lawsuit was filed in Manhattan on Friday.
Haring was known for his unique style and was a major figure in the New York art scene of the 1980s. He died of AIDS in 1990. His work can often go for as much as $1 million.