This was a fresh and clean New York, where you dressed nicely everyday and worked in soaring, smoke-free, drug-less architectural building filled with busts, bronzes and billionaires. (page 8)

The quotation above and below, taken from Steve Martin's book, An Object of Beauty, synthesizes the setting of his book really well. It includes the location New York, and social environment of the extremely wealthy upper class. The first quote doesn't specify the protagonist and narrators occupation however, Martin implies their profession is high society and he specifies it in the second quote. The narrator and protagonist are influenced by the way people treat and view their ideas/opinions. You can understand that because the narrator talks about the appearance of the people and architecture in the city. In the second quote is says "When we were twenty-three,..." implying they are recently out of college and at a new job/new city. Using this information you can assume they have a limited amount of money even though they are pushing themselves into the popular art world that is a constant trade of money.

When we were twenty-three, our interest in art as a profession landed us both in New York City at a time when the art world was building offshore like a developing hurricane. (page 5)

- New York: Tall buildings, busy streets, wealthy upper class, people who enjoy their culture and the opinions of others, therefore they impress people by buying expensive art and nice clothes.
- Art auction (protagonist), Art writer (narrator): they both enjoy the world of art but not the producing. They both are interconnected with the business and marketing side of art.
- 1990's, the protagonist deals with mainly early 20th Century American Art: They live in the late 20th Century but deal with the history and influence of early American art. The characters deal with a lot of what other people are looking for and what people want to see in themselves.


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