The lawsuit filed by Michelle and Jon Heinemann against the Cathedral School of St. John the Divine alleges they made a deal with school administrators to place a winning bid of up to $3,000 for the piece, created by their son, Hudson Cornelius Heinemann, and his kindergarten class, at a charity event they could not attend, the New York Post reported Monday.
The suit alleges school officials took advantage of the deal by driving bidding on the artwork, which artist Michelle Heinemann helped the class create, up to "the outrageous sum of $50,000."
The artwork was comprised of paper cut-outs of the students' hands that were painted and paired with the students' statements regarding their thoughts about art.
"The Heinemanns tried to settle this matter without a lawsuit, but the cathedral had no interest in taking responsibility for their actions," family spokesman R. Couri Hay said.
The couple pulled their children out of the school and their lawsuit is seeking $415,000 plus damages for costs, including tuition to Cathedral School of St. John for Hudson and his sister, tuition to a new school for the children and payment for Hudson's $60,000-a-year chauffeur.