Deputy Chairman, Christie's International
London, King Street
As Deputy Chairman of Christie’s International, Charles Cator is responsible for maintaining and enhancing Christie’s business development opportunities throughout the country, as well as internationally. A renowned furniture specialist, Charles Cator is also Chairman of the Furniture and Decorative Arts Department, and has been with the company for forty years. Under his leadership, Christie’s set the current world auction record for any piece of traditional furniture - £19 million for the Badminton Cabinet in 2004, this broke the previous record of £8.5 million which the Badminton Cabinet had set fourteen years earlier in 1990. Charles has been directly involved with the sale of all ten of the top furniture lots ever sold at Christie’s internationally in London, Monaco/Paris and New York and has been closely involved with many landmark sales of major single-owner collections including The Collection of Hubert de Givenchy in the 1990s, through to the Collection of the Barons Nathaniel and Albert Rothschild (1999), Works of Art from Longleat (2002), The Champalimaud Collection (2005), Wildenstein (2005), The Simon Sainsbury Collection (2008), The Spencer House Sale (2010) and both the first and second part of the Riahi Collection ( 2000/2012). He has worked closely on the highly successful annual various owner auction format introduced in 2008: The Exceptional Sale.
A keen historian, Charles is passionate about the history of collecting, not only in terms of academic research but particularly in working closely with colleagues in the Private Collections department and most importantly with collectors themselves; inspiring, nurturing and celebrating true connoisseurship. He is currently writing a definitive work on the furniture of William Ince and John Mayhew, in collaboration with Sir Hugh Roberts, Director Emeritus of the Royal Collection. He has also written a book in collaboration with David Linley and Helen Chislett, Star Pieces, publishing in 2009 which focuses on the links between modern and old in furniture and design.
Charles served as a member of The International Council of The Wallace Collection from 2008-2012 and a Trustee/Director of The Cobbe Collection from 1991-2011. He is a Trustee of the Monument Trust and of The Great Steward of Scotland’s Dumfries House Trust.