The 88-year-old mother of Norwegian artist Bjarne Melgaard has reportedly grown weary of disagreements with her son over money, ownership of art and a condominium in Oslo. Newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) reports that the two, both armed with high-profile attorneys will now meet in an Oslo court, to settle alleged differences.
“There has, for a long time, been strife … that’s never been resolved,” Per Danielsen, attorney for Gro Melgaard, told DN. He said his client seeks a legal clarification, “so that they can be finished with what she views as exhausting and intolerable.”
The artist’s lawyer, John Christian Elden, claims there is no strife and that Bjarne Melgaard has never wanted money, the condo where his mother lives in Oslo, nor art that he’d given her earlier.
“He has therefore only filed a claim to be freed from Danielsen’s claims that he’s demanding anything himself,” Elden told DN. “He (Melgaard) believes this is misuse of the legal system, but he has to address Danelsen’s demands that he meet his mother in court.”
DN reported that public records show Gro Melgaard and Bjarne Melgaard each owning half of the condo on Drammensveien in Oslo that was purchased in 2008 for NOK 4.85 million. “But he claims he owns the entire condo,” Danielsen told DN. “It’s where she lives, so it plagues her to have strife around that.”
It now may be worth nearly NOK 10 million in Oslo’s current real estate market. Danielsen said he couldn’t answer why public records show them each owning half of the condo. DN reported that Bjarne Melgaard is also listed as the owner of another condo in Oslo’s Frogner district that he purchased in June of last year for NOK 6.7 million. He recently said he was moving back to Oslo after many years of living in New York.
Gro Melgaard and her son are also allegedly arguing over around 50 pieces of art, many of which are believed to be Melgaard’s own paintings, that he had given to his mother over the years. “He claims he only lent her the art, and demands to get it back,” Danielsen told DN. Elden claims that’s not correct, telling DN that “Bjarne Melgaard has no objections to her having the art.”
The case is due to go to court in May of next year.