Not too shabby for someone who once thought she would end up in a sleepy museum doing curation.
There are surprising parallels between fine art sales and investing. The key question is always about valuation: How can we determine market prices for individual items that might not be especially liquid and come to market once every few decades? Auction processes can help set prices, as can buyers who specialize in specific art assets.
There are objective issues that affect the price of each item: rarity, authenticity and provenance, certainly. But other issues of valuation are clearly subjective: how sensuous, romantic, beautiful, lush or vivid a work might be. Such opinions often determine why one painting by an artist might sell for $750,000, while another from the same artist can sell for $7 million — or even $70 million.