There were five lots in Christie’s Evening Impressionist and Modern sale that were bought publicly since 2007. The majority of those lots were sold for a profit though none for spectacular gains. The Henri Laurens made an 18% gain in four years; Giacometti’s Tete de Diego racked up 10% over the same period. Meanwhile, Sisley was sold at a loss and the Valmier will have to try its luck on the private market. However, the best gain of the evening on a recently purchased work came with the Bonnard that was purchased at a small French auction house just last April. In seven months the owners made a quick 30% gain.
That’s a nice piece of arbitrage but perhaps not as impressive as buying at the height of the bubble and still making money as the owners of the Laurens and the Giacometti did.