Lee Wells, of Stratus Global Partners, suspects he may have landed on a very good deal while “manning the Dorian Grey Gallery” on Sunday:
The way he tells it: “A guy walks into the gallery and says ‘I used to roll with Haring and have a piece I want to sell and if you’re smart this is your lucky day because I need the cash today.'”
So he buys it because “the confidence of the mark tells me it just may be real,” and because “the lower tag is by long time Haring collaborator LA2 (Angel Ortiz).”
He spent “$99” on it, so the risk isn’t huge, though–the windfall may be — still, I admire his confidence.
Asked what comes next, Wells replied:
“Once we get it authenticated we will figure out what to do. It’s my piece and should I decide to sell it, I’ll will most likely share proceeds with LA2 and give a little back to the guy who sold it to me (maybe the gallery too) Its a pretty little piece from 1988.”
Curious about the possibility that a confidence trickster with a bit of niche art knowledge (and a confident hand) might be able to make a small pile of money by forcing hurried sales on galleries and collectors, I began a search for fake Harings — found nothing (so far) — but I did stumble upon a very fine site selling fake art to all the would-be collectors out there who scorn posters but must have a Keith Haring on their wall.