Art: A Wonderful Investment

On the velvet block at Manhattan's Parke-Bernet auction gallery last week was a yellowish nude by Pierre Bonnard, and the bidding had already reached $99,000. There, for a moment, it stayed, until the auctioneer breezily pointed out that "it would be much nicer to be able to tell your friends that it cost $100,000." Minutes later, the painting went for $101,000 —$7,000 more than the Bonnard auction record of 1958.

The collection on sale belonged to Mr. and Mrs. Adolphe Juviler of New York and Palm Beach, who explained that they wanted to be freer to travel. Their treasures were a choice,...

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