Düsseldorf – The court is convinced: An alleged work by artist Günther Uecker (90) that the art dealer Ernst Jockels (46) wanted to sell is plagiarism!
Now Jockels has to reimburse the down payment received, worth 7500 euros.
The subject of dispute at the Düsseldorf Regional Court was the work “Sandbild 1986 on handmade paper”, which was supposedly by Uecker. Jockels wanted to sell the work of art (80 x 60 centimeters, alleged value: 45,000 euros) for only 15,000 euros to claimant Francesca V. (56).
“My client paid 2,500 euros in cash and gave Mr. Jockels two used Rolex watches of the ‘Datejust 36’ type with a total value of 5,000 euros,” says lawyer Reinhard F. Selke. Jockels was to receive the missing 7500 euros as soon as Francesca V. resold the Uecker work to a collector.
But the buyer got a second opinion in a gallery. Selke: “There were concerns about the authenticity there. Uecker’s son Jacob was turned on. With the result that the work should not come from his father. This meant that the purchase was no longer necessary; reselling it would have been fraudulent. “
Günther Uecker (90) himself, as a witness, finally brought clarity to the plagiarism process. Bending over the work with a pocket magnifier, he examined it. His assessment: “This is the first time I’ve seen this. It’s not mine. “
The artist on the witness chair continues: “The style of the work doesn’t suit me. I didn’t make any sand pictures on paper at all. The signature is not mine either. “
His son Jacob (36), who is busy with his father’s catalog raisonné (around 8000 objects), confirmed his statement: “The design, signature does not fit. There is also an artistic secret by which we can recognize the authenticity of each work. ”Jockels, husband of the Essen district court president, also asked for an expert opinion:“ Maybe Mr. Uecker just can’t remember. ”
But the court was convinced of Uecker’s and his son’s statements and passed the verdict in favor of the plaintiff.
Günther Uecker belonged to the famous artist group Zero with Heinz Mack and Otto Piene, which was founded in 1958. The artists tried to make a fresh start, a “zero hour” for post-war art.