A rancorous public feud between the widow of painter Thomas Kinkade and his girlfriend over his multi-million dollar estate has been quietly settled.
The San Jose Mercury News reports that lawyers for Nanette Kinkade and his girlfriend Amy Pinto announced the settlement but are keeping details secret.
Kinkade, who marketed himself as the ‘Painter of Light’ had left his wife of 28 years and was legally separated from her when he died of an overdose of valium and alcohol on April 6.
His girlfriend, Amy Pinto, claimed he had written two notes leaving his mansion to her and creating a $10-million fund to establish a museum of his paintings. She claimed Kinkade planned to marry her as soon as his divorce came through.
His wife Nanette Kinkade disputed Pinto’s claims to the estate and sought full control of his work. The couple had four daughters.
It is not known who ultimately inherited his mansion and body of work after their settlement. Lawyers say the women kept the artist's message of "love, spirituality and optimism" in their amicable resolution, but no details were disclosed.
After his death, Pinto refused to leave Kinkade’s Monte Sereno, Calif., mansion and estate lawyers hired a security guard to make sure she took nothing out of the house.
Kinkade was estimated to be worth about $66 million US at the time of his death. His sentimental paintings, with their scenes of country gardens and churches in dewy morning light, sold extremely well.
Kinkade modeled himself on Norman Rockwell, saying he liked to make people happy.