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Don’t Try to Get Too Rothkozy

Protecting the painting.


Sotheby’s was taking no chances with the Mark Rothko masterpiece that sold for $72.8 million last week. It threw a party for young collectors. But the color coordination excluded the cocktails. Bartenders told attendees that cosmos would be made with white cranberry juice only, though the glasses were pink-hued. (Auction houses always ban very staining red wine.) A velvet rope and two guards flanked the painting. “People were getting too close,” said one. But all these measures disappeared for a more exclusive (and grown-up) collectors brunch, where deep-pocketed potential buyers were encouraged to get up close as contemporary-art expert Tobias Meyer schmoozed it up. Mimosas were served.

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