The infamous scammer Anna Sorokin, who rose to fame as the fake heiress Anna Delvey, is back in the limelight, showcasing drawings at a Manhattan art show. The exhibition, titled “Free Anna Delvey” (referring to the pseudonym she used when perpetrating her scams), showcases her own drawings—or, rather, reworkings of her drafts by former art forger Alfredo Martinez, along with works of other artists who were inspired by the experiences of the high-society scammer. The original sketches by Sorokin were created during her incarceration and posted on her Instagram account. Now, the reworked drawings by Martinez are selling for $10,000 each.
The five drawings being offered for sale are reflections of her past and current situation. For instance, “Anna on ICE” presents a faceless likeness of Sorokin on an ice floe, with “ICE” referring to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center where she is currently awaiting deportation to Germany after having completed a 2-year jail sentence for scamming more than $200,000 from New York City elites. Another work depicts Sorokin chatting online, asking someone to “Send Bitcoin” (the title of the drawing). Proceeds from the sale of the drawings are intended to cover Sorokin’s legal costs, with 15% of the revenue to be donated to an “unspecified children’s charity.”
As far back as 2019, New York Times photographer Stephen Hirsch had begun a series of 10 paintings of Sorokin during her trial. These images apparently made her laugh, but the resulting sales might have inspired her to pick up the brush herself.
While Sorokin initially intended to personally create the versions of her drawings that would be sold, Martinez, who has served jail time for forging other artists’ drawings, stepped up and “assisted” her in doing so, claiming that “in the art world, it’s very common to have an assistant.” He created larger scale versions of Sorokin’s originals, since she couldn’t get access to larger sheets of paper while in custody.
The art show in Manhattan may represent just the beginning for Sorokin in the arts world. Art dealer Chris Martine has begun mentoring her and is planning her first solo show, to be hosted at “an upscale Manhattan location,” featuring 20 drawings. Martine then plans to bring the exhibition to Los Angeles, Miami, London, and Paris.
Sorokin’s story has also been turned into a Netflix mini-series, “Inventing Anna.” According to Sorokin, however, the “superglam portrayal” of her life is “not that accurate.”
David Boos is an organist, documentary filmmaker, and writer for The European Conservative and other publications.