Prison Spin for Hirst Faker
A self-proclaimed US pastor has been has been given a six month jail sentence for attempting to sell fake Damien Hirst spin art paintings.
Art collectors of ArtKabinett social media network must be wary of Hirst spin art and dot paintings, as these iconic pieces are so easily replicated.
The faker was arrested after he tried to flog the work to an undercover policeman.
Kevin Sutherland, of the Mosaic Miami Church in Florida, bought five Hirsts on eBay which also included two of his spot paintings.
Damien Hirst has been known to support children's charity by showing up to lead a kids spin art event, as seen in today's Featured Art Video. However, these souvenirs cannot be considered artist originals.
Sutherland took the fake works to Sotheby's in 2013, where they were turned down. He then proposed a fire-sale price to an investigator.
The 46-year-old, pictured above with the fake work, will appeal his sentence of six months in jail and five years probation.
His lawyer, Sam Talkin, portrayed the crime as "an isolated detour from an otherwise law-abiding life". But prosecutors argued Sutherland not only tried to rid himself of paintings he knew were forged, but tried to sell them at a profit.
The auction house informed Sutherland on 31 January that there had been a problem with the authentication. Within three hours, he emailed the detective offering him the five works for a total price of $185,000.
He assured the officer they were genuine. Sutherland was arrested on 7 February after meeting his contact at the Gramercy Park Hotel in New York. "This crime was motivated by greed," said Rachel Hochhauser, an assistant district attorney. "He did more than try to pass on his financial loss. He tried to get a windfall from it."
Prosecutors told the court that Sutherland had "not only attempted to unload artwork he knew was fake, but that he also attempted to turn a profit on the deal".
“This crime was motivated by greed,” Rachel Hochhauser, an assistant district attorney added. “He did more than try to pass on his financial loss. He tried to get a windfall from it.”