Dennis Hopper's Wife Yanks Art From Auction

Battle rages over late actor's estate
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Jan 12, 2011 4:26 AM CST
Andy Warhol's portrait of Mao includes two bullet holes put there by "Easy Rider" star Dennis Hopper.   (AP Photo/Christie's Images Ltd. 2010)
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(Newser) – Dennis Hopper's estranged wife has yanked a portion of his art collection from an auction. The artwork is at the center of a heated battle over the late actor's estate. Hopper began divorce proceedings against his fifth wife,Victoria Duffy, and obtained a restraining order against her as he lay dying last year, claiming she was "inhuman" and "insane." But she managed to win a temporary restraining order in a California court blocking sale of the artwork. The collection is estimated to be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, reports the Independent.

"As a result of a title claim brought by Dennis Hopper's estranged wife, Christie's must withdraw 32 items from the sale," said a Christie's spokeswoman. Beneficiaries of the estate are Hopper's four children, with the youngest, 7-year-old Galen, benefiting most from auction income. Other works owned by Hopper have already been auctioned, including Andy Warhol's Mao, which sold yesterday for $303,000. The work includes two bullet holes from shots fired into it by Hopper. Warhol agreed to call the art a "collaboration" and labeled the holes "warning shot" and "bullet hole."

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