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Sculptor sued by DMC Construction


Published: October 31, 2008

A MONTEREY construction company is suing a local sculptor alleging the artist hasn’t paid more than $100,000 in labor and materials for his new gallery at Lincoln and Sixth in downtown Carmel.

DMC Construction filed a lawsuit Oct. 21 against sculptor Richard MacDonald, who the company says has not paid $117,443.80 in construction costs for his showplace gallery.

In July, DMC Construction filed a lien on the property for the unpaid bills.

DMC and MacDonald entered into a contract in April 2007 to construct the building, a portion of which was to be used as an art gallery and a portion as a residential apartment.

According to the lawsuit, throughout the course of construction, the artist modified the original plans and specifications.

MacDonald “significantly delayed the progress of the construction by failing to make decisions in a timely manner” and made continuing changes to plans, which increased the costs, the suit indicates.

And the MacDonald Family Partnership, also listed in the suit, made “unreasonable demands to DMC beyond the scope of the contract, communicating with DMC’s employees in an unprofessional manner and falsely accusing DMC of wrongdoing,” according to the lawsuit.

DMC Construction general manager Mark Lord said he was unable to discuss the matter because of the pending suit. Messages left at MacDonald’s offices this week were not returned.

The lawsuit also seeks interest that has accumulated on the unpaid amount since July 25. DMC stopped work on the project this summer.

According to the suit, the contract requires MacDonald to pay reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs in any lawsuit filed by DMC to collect money owed.

When the city’s planning commission approved the original design of the MacDonald gallery in November 2005, the building was hailed as a means of revamping a sagging Sixth Avenue and drawing more art buyers to a street filled with galleries and shops.

But as construction dragged on for two years, some businesses on the street complained about the disruption, which they said cost them customers.

MacDonald’s website calls him one of the most collected figurative bronze sculptors today.

In 2000, he created the 15-foot-tall “Momentum,” depicting a golfer mid-swing, for the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. Even larger was the “Flair Across America” he created for the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Ga.

“Richard MacDonald has achieved this stature through a consuming passion for his work and an unrelenting dedication to its quality and integrity,” according to his website.