Art Capital Group is a company which offers loans of half a million dollars or more to those who own art they deem worthy of being collateral.
The company has been doing well in the recent economic chaos as some in the art world have experienced an abrupt drop off in their opportunities to make money and look for a stop-gap solution.
The photographer Annie Leibovitz is one such victim of circumstance.
She is famous for such photographs as that of a pregnant and naked Demi Moore, and notorious for ones of a near-naked 16-year-old Miley Cyrus for Vanity Fair, and has been as well-paid as any photographer in the world.
In her career she has photographed Queen Elizabeth II and Michael Jackson, as well as photographing John Lennon with Yoko Ono a matter of hours before Lennon was murdered.
Leibovitz had allowed herself to get into debt by the summer of 2008, however, apparently due to unpaid taxes, rental bills and a failed book project.
This proved to be terrible timing as with the credit crunch in the autumn many businesses such as magazines are perhaps less likely to sign six figure contracts for photographs.
By February Leibovitz had taken out a total of $24m from Art Capital Group against not only her two homes, negatives and copyright of her photographs, but also her archive and rights to arrange a sale of that archive to repay the debt.
ACG are now preparing to take her to court, and it seems highly unlikely that Leibovitz will be able to pay off her loan before September as she needs to.
ACG are known to be ruthless if loans are not paid off perfectly in time, so it now seems highly likely that Leibovitz will lose most of the assets she has jeopardised.