Lloyds of London Sues American Airlines for Damaged Lucio Fontana Work

The work was on its way to the Armory Show in NY.

American Airlines passenger planes are seen on the tarmac at Miami International Airport in Miami, Florida, June 8, 2015. (ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)

High-end insurer Lloyds of London has filed a lawsuit against American Airlines and a handful of other freight companies for the damage incurred to a six-figure Lucio Fontana artwork that Lloyds paid a claim on.

The work, Concetta Spaziale (1965–60), which was on its way to the 2015 edition of the Armory Show in New York, had been insured by Lloyds for Beverly Hills art dealer Marc Selwyn, of Marc Selwyn Fine Art, according to a report in The Art Newspaper, and a brief on Courthouse News. Lloyds had not responded to artnet News’s request for comment by publication time.

A Swiss art trading company known as AGB Contemporary AG consigned the Fontana work, which is reportedly a sculpture, to Selwyn with an asking price of $196,00 (€175,000). The work was stored by World Freight, located outside Paris, where it was packed, and then subsequently traveled from Charles de Gaulle airport to JFK International airport in New York, in late February 2015.

When the sculpture was unwrapped the following week at the Armory Show, which takes place each March on the far west side of Manhattan at piers near 55th street, the object was found to be damaged, though these are not specified in the news report.

According to the report:

Lloyd’s paid Marc Selwyn Fine Art $104,250 to cover the insurance money due, and is now seeking to recover $116,000 in damages as well as legal fees.

Elite Systematic Arts and MainFreight in the US; CDG Handling, ARC Transport, World Freight and Socièté Nouvelle Cornu Emballeurs in France; and Kraft ELS AG in Switzerland are named as the other co-defendants. None could be reached for comment.




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