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Airport Interviews: Victoria Anstead, Art Adviser

Sitting at JFK airport for hours on end during major delays offers a great opportunity to meet people. Today, we were fortunate enough to meet art adviser Victoria Anstead, who remains in good spirits despite waiting for her flight for several hours. Victoria's job sounds pretty sweet, if you ask us. Basically, the wealthy come to her for help building up their collections of fine art. She advises them how much to pay at auction, and how to be sure that they're not screwed. If you're looking for that perfect piece to put in the lobby of your Greenwich office, you might want to talk to her before you do anything rash.
Dealbreaker: What do you do, and how did you get into the business?
Victoria Anstead: I help people buy art wisely and enjoyably, and keep them out of trouble. I was an artist, realized I would starve to death, got an MBA, became a banker, realized I missed art and the art world and then became an art dealer.
DB: How does being an art dealer compare to being an investment banker?
VA: I love getting up in the morning.
DB: How would you describe the state of today's art market?
VA: Insane! Too much money chasing too few wonderful things. It's like the 80s again, but there are more people in the market now, all after the same thing. There's a lot of cash, but there's still a limit on how many good things there are. So, people are in danger of buying second and third rate work.
DB: Thanks for the interview. Hope you make it to your destination today.
And if you want to hire Victoria to consult with you on your next art purchase, feel free to contact her at


The Art Of The Farewell

Not everyone gets to write a New York Times Op-Ed when they quit their job, however disaffected. It’s also easier to quit a job after twelve years of cashing investment banking paychecks. No matter how “morally bankrupt” Goldman Sachs is, Greg Smith isn’t giving his bonuses back. Unlike Smith, who quit his job on his own terms and got to publish most of his resume in the Times, most of corporate America isn’t as lucky – and almost everyone in corporate America really wants to quit their job. So what are you supposed to do if you can’t get any above-the-fold space in a major newspaper? You have to burn bridges the old fashioned way – by writing a farewell email.