Jaime España (left) and José Luis Mesas. | Archive

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The Hotel Artmadams in Palma has generated a great deal of attention and controversy ever since it was painted with an elaborate mural. The town hall has insisted that the mural has to go, but for now it remains.

José Luis Mesas was the artist, and he is now suing the owner of the hotel, Jaime España, for non-payment. The artist's legal representative, Tomeu Simonet, says that Mesas has been waiting since he finished the work at the end of 2021 to be paid "the agreed money", an amount that he prefers not to reveal but which is "considerable". "There is a contractual breach by the owner with respect to my client. The agreement is still in force."

"José Luis has been waiting all this time. He offered a thousand ways to fix the situation, but seeing that it was impossible, he called me to initiate the appropriate action. We have tried to resolve it; an amicable agreement has been sought." Simonet argues that the work "has added great value to the hotel". "It has gone from being practically unknown without any importance to being well known and commented upon."

Jaime España denies the allegation. "The agreement we had was one between friends." He says that José Luis Mesas received around 75,000 euros that were paid in sixteen monthly instalments. A further 25,000 euros were for expenses. "We always had a very good relationship. I don't understand why he now says that I have not paid him anything and that he is asking me for more."