Madoff’s Warhol, Matisse, to be Sold to Help Pay Victims

Bernard Madoff’s art, including an oriental carpet and paper works by Andy Warhol and Henri Matisse, will go to auction to raise money for victims of his $17 billion Ponzi scheme.

The works, insured for more than $575,000, formerly decorated Madoff’s offices in Manhattan and Queens, New York, the trustee liquidating the Madoff brokerage, Irving Picard, said in a filing today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

The Matisse is a 1952 crayon drawing of a woman’s head, and the two Warhols include a 1969 silkscreen titled “Chicken and Dumplings.” Paper works by Jasper Johns include a 1967 set of etchings and photo engravings, together with the title page, “Ale Can,” according to the filing.

Picard has gathered about $9.3 billion to compensate the jailed confidence man’s customers since his 2008 arrest. An Aston Martin that belonged to Peter Madoff, brother of Bernard, sold at a 2011 auction for $247,500. Investors filed claims for about $17 billion in lost principal, according to Picard.

Picard had a setback yesterday when three appeals judges said he couldn’t sue banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and HSBC Holdings Plc for $30 billion.

The Madoff brokerage firm occupied several floors of what is known as the Lipstick Building on Third Avenue in midtown Manhattan. Madoff’s trading units were on the 19th floor, with the investment advisory operations two levels down.

Madoff, 75, is serving a 150-year sentence in a federal prison in North Carolina. His scheme collapsed when he could no longer lure new money to fund withdrawals.

The bankruptcy case is Securities Investor Protection Corp. v. Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC, 08-ap-01789, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.