Lawsuit Involving Death Row Artist Dropped

     SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – A friend of death-row artist William Noguera has dropped a lawsuit that claims his former representative sold Noguera’s art without permission.
     As executive director of the William A. Noguera Trust, Melissa Ysais filed the federal complaint on March 20 against David Ferguson and the Institute for Unpopular Culture.
     Ferguson, founder of the suspended Institute, started exhibiting Noguera’s work in 2004.
     The trust claimed that Noguera terminated his association with Ferguson and his institute in 2007, but Ferguson continued to offer Noguera’s works for sale on his website.
     William Noguera has been on death row in San Quentin since 1988. He was convicted of murdering his girlfriend’s mother in 1983, when he was 18.
     His artwork has drawn critical acclaim. Most of it is hyper-realistic pen and ink drawings, such as his “Stone for Edmund Dantes,” based on the wrongfully imprisoned hero from “The Count of Monte Cristo.” He also does cubist and abstract works. His most recent exhibition was at New York Law School in 2010.
     Ysais on Wednesday filed a motion for voluntary dismissal, through her attorneys, Christopher Wanger and William Broome with Manatt, Phelps & Phillips in San Francisco.
     The firm did not return a request for comment.
     Ysais said she will dismiss with prejudice as to Ferguson and without prejudice as to the institute.
     Ferguson could not be reached for comment.

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