Though shy of publicity not of his own making, he was often in the news, announcing a project or one of his 200 lawsuits against rivals, tenants, banks or even friends, often in losing causes. Like it or not, he was a New York real estate mogul, along with Donald J. Trump, the Fisher brothers, Lewis Rudin, Leonard Litwin, the Milstein family, Bernard H. Mendik, Larry Silverstein and Harry B. Helmsley.
While he dropped out of New York University in the 1950s, Mr. Solow, who was self-taught in fine art appreciation, amassed one of the city’s notable private collections of Renaissance and modern art, with works by van Gogh, Joan Miró, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Balthus, Picasso, Matisse, Botticelli, Giacometti, Morris Louis and Mark Rothko, as well as Egyptian antiquities and African art.
He bought most of his art from dealers. But in 1973, he picked up a