Art: The Art Market Spiral

At 35, Stockbroker Paul Gauguin turned from the busy world of men and money to the pursuit of nature and art. On the evidence of his paintings, he enjoyed life thereafter, though he was dirt-poor. By last week the busy world had fully caught up with Gauguin. In just 30 seconds at Sotheby's in London, one of the happy renegade's last South Sea canvases was sold for a record $364,000. Other high prices in the auction of 185 impressionists and postimpressionists: $406,000 for Cezanne's Peasant in a Blue Blouse; $126,000 for a Van Gogh...

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