It gratifies a taste for irony that art-works by Vincent Van Gogh continue to fetch unprecedented sums. His "Garden of Flowers" was auctioned off the other day for $8.36 million, almost twice the previous record for any drawing.

During his life, Van Gogh was utterly unsuccessful and impoverished. Yet in death, this least worldly of artists triumphs. He reigns supreme in the slickest of all arenas, the art market. Tycoons and dealers compete for the ultimate cachet of having a Van Gogh.Besides irony, there's justice in this state of affairs - once you get past the incongruity of measuring genius in millions.