Angry Developer is the Reason Why Triston Eaton Mural was Erased from Allen Street Last Week
Last week, the Little Italy Street Art Project teamed up with Triston Eaton for a mural above Allen Street. Right beside the long-stalled Allen Street Hotel. The short-lived collaboration was a co-branded effort with Guess that featured one of their models. Yet it barely lasted three days. The fly-by-night erasure had been a mystery to those in the neighborhood. Until now.
Look no further than spurned DAB Group owner-developer Ben Zhavian, whose property is reportedly being foreclosed upon (139 Orchard, 77-79 Rivington), and currently amidst a messy legal tangle. Remember that this is the guy who leveled death threats against Mavericks, the firm behind said acquisition. And his tactics were similarly repeated with LISA Project founder Wayne Rada.
Rada tells us that he signed a contract for the Tristan Eaton mural. Work commenced Friday. The shit hit the fan on Tuesday when Zhavian allegedly called Rada a “motherfucker” for painting the mural. There were apparently other threats, too. Something about how the LISA Project never paid for the wall itself. (Rada tells us that they don’t do that, instead trading exposure for waived fee).
In the end, the LISA Project decided to cut its losses to avoid a quagmire. They erased the mural and headed to a different location in SoHo. Later that day, tombstone signage from Misrahi Realty appeared onsite.