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Judge Dismisses Challenge to Artist’s Will

A judge has tossed out a complaint lodged against the estate of the late Navajo artist R.C. Gorman.

Joseph Sparks contended he was owed half of Gorman’s $30 million estate because they had a secret business partnership for 19 years.

Sparks also says Gorman promised him a small house and an acre of land near the artist’s home north of Taos, N.M.

State District Judge John Paternoster of Raton, N.M., rejected the complaint last month.

Gorman’s gallery director, Virginia Dooley, says Sparks did only background work for Gorman’s paintings.

Gorman died Nov. 3, 2005, at age 74.

Gorman’s will specified Sparks would receive only $10,000.