Steve Wynn 'Incandescent' Over Damaged Picasso

And he thinks Christie's auction house undervalued the masterpiece
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 17, 2018 1:35 PM CDT
This March 15, 2016, file photo shows casino mogul Steve Wynn at a news conference in Medford, Mass.   (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

(Newser) – Steve Wynn is not happy with Christie's after the auction house damaged his Picasso masterpiece, sources tell Page Six, which describes Wynn's state of mind as "furious" and "incandescent." Christie's was preparing to exhibit the 1943 self-portrait Le Marin in advance of the auction that had been planned for May 15 when a metal extension rod for a wall paint roller fell on the canvas, causing a "significant hole." Sources say Wynn is afraid the painting might not be able to be repaired; restorers and loss adjusters are currently assessing the damage. Wynn, who once put his elbow through a different Picasso he owned, also feels Christie's undervalued the painting at $70 million; he predicted it would have sold for $100 million or more.

"To say that Mr. Wynn is upset is an extreme understatement. This was clearly an act of gross negligence on the part of Christie’s employees," Wynn's adviser says. "There may be a debate among art and insurance experts for some time, but Mr. Wynn’s new art dealership expects to be fully compensated for the cost and time to repair the painting, and the diminution in its value, following this flagrant act of gross negligence by Christie’s staff." Former casino mogul Wynn, 76, stepped down as CEO of Wynn Resorts in February amid sexual harassment allegations, though he denies wrongdoing. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported this week that 114 people have been interviewed and millions of documents have been reviewed in the probe into those allegations. (Read more Steve Wynn stories.)

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