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Christiaan van Rechteren Limpurg began his career at Christie’s as a trainee in the Chinese Department. He was appointed junior specialist at the Furniture Department in 1999. Now as co-head of the department he specialises in furniture, carpets and sculptures from 1400-1800. His accomplishments include the sale of a carpet which fetched €201,075 at Christie’s King Street and in 2006 he achieved €314,400 with a lyre secretaire, the highest price ever for a piece of furniture at a Dutch auction. Christiaan studied in Rotterdam, Leiden and Amsterdam and speaks Dutch, English, German and French.
Stefan Doebner began his career at Christie's in 2003, and is credited with numerous successes such as the 2008 sale of a pair of Blaeu Globes for €793,850, the highest price ever realized for a work of art at a Dutch auction. Prior to Christie’s, Stefan received a cabinet maker apprenticeship in Augsburg and gained in-debt knowledge in the field of restoration and conservation at Cologne College, where he also worked for the Museum für Angewandte Kunst. Consecutively, he held practice as an independent restorer for 2 years, published a standard work about Biedermeier furniture and was employed as a Specialist at a Stuttgart auction house. Stefan is fluent in German, English and Dutch.
Deputy Chairman, Christie's UK International Head of Furniture & Decorative Arts Department Robert Copley was appointed International Director of the Furniture and Decorative Arts Department in January 2007, continuing the extraordinary sales and record prices which have greatly contributed to Christie’s dominance in this category. Highlights during Robert’s long-standing career include the sale of the Anglesey Desk in 1993 for £1.76 million; at the time a world record for any piece of English furniture. Later however, the Exceptional Furniture sale (London, June 2008) saw this record broken four times over with pieces such as the Kenure Cabinet, attributed to Thomas Chippendale, realising £2.76 million, a pair of Dundas chairs reaching £2.28 million and the Dundas sofa achieving £2.17 million, both designed by Robert Adam and made by Thomas Chippendale. Robert was also instrumental in cataloguing the contents of Dumfries House in Scotland, arguably the most important representative collection of works from Thomas Chippendale’s Director period. Dumfries House and its contents were acquired for the British Nation by the Art Fund in June 2007.
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.
Marcus Rädecke joined Christie’s furniture department in 2000 and now heads the King Street team. He has travelled extensively in Europe and the UK finding property for auction in London and has been a key figure in several collection sales in London and across Europe, including the ‘Deutsche Schloss Auktion’ at Schloss Anholdt in Germany, November 2001 (£1,798,872), the ‘Axel Vervoordt’ house sale in Antwerp, Belgium, May 2004 (£5,144,273), as well as the auctions of the ‘Champalimaud Collection’, July 2005 (£38,968,460), and the ‘Wildenstein Collection’, November 2005 (£21,907,760) in London. Following training as a reserve officer in the Germany Navy, Marcus read Classical Architecture as well as undertaking an apprenticeship as a cabinet-maker. A diploma in restoration from West Dean College, Sussex, and subsequent position in the conservation studios of Spink and Son brought Marcus to London where he also gained an M.Phil in History of Art at Christie's Education. Drawing on his practical experience as well as his academic knowledge Marcus gives lectures and talks and has contributed to various publications in the field.
Peter joined Christie's Furniture department in 1996 and has worked on countless auction sales at South Kensington and King Street including noble and country house sales and English and European corporate collections. Highlights include cataloguing the contents of Tyntesfield, Somerset, acquired for the Nation in June 2002 by the National Trust, furniture from the Bank of England in 2004, the superb collection of furniture and works of art of the late Simon Sainsbury sold June 2008 which realised a total of £16,512,000, and The Spencer House sale in July 2010. Peter is Head of sale for The English Collector held twice yearly and catalogues The Exceptional Sale.
Amjad Rauf is undoubtedly the most international member of Christie's Furniture department, with fluency in English, French, German and Dutch. He joined the department in in London 1995, was subsequently based in Amsterdam from 1997-1999, and re-joined the London team in 2000. Since 2003 Amjad Rauf has been responsible for the department's sales of European Furniture and Tapestries, travelling throughout the Continent. He has been involved in various landmark sales, such as the collection of the Dukes of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (£1,609,767), the late Dr Anton Dreesmann (£22.4m), and was responsible for the sale of the Badminton cabinet in 2004 (£19 million), the most expensive piece of Furniture ever sold at auction.
During a career at Christie's that began in 1990, Donald Johnston’s knowledge of early European sculpture (Mediaeval, Renaissance, Baroque and Neo-classical) has helped shape numerous European sales which feature sculpture. His successes include the recent sale of The Collection of Jean-Joseph Marquet de Vasselot (2011), and a previously unrecognised Italian bronze relief of the late 15th century depicting Mars, Venus, Cupid and Vulcan which sold in December 2003 for £6,950,000 - a world record for any piece of early European sculpture at auction. Other spectacular sales to which Mr. Johnston contributed were the Collection Yves Saint Laurent et Pierre Berge (2009), Ancienne Collection Charles Gillot (March 2008), Ancienne Collection du Baron Hottinguer (December 2003), Works of Art from the Wernher Collection (July 2000), The Collection of the Barons Nathaniel and Albert von Rothschild (July 1999), Wentworth (July 1998), and Works of Art from the Bute Collection (July 1996). He has also been instrumental in negotiating the private sale of a number of high value items to both private collectors and international institutions. A graduate of Trinity College, Toronto, Mr. Johnston also holds an M.A. in English Renaissance History from the University of Toronto, and continued his studies at Christie's Education in London with a Diploma from the Royal Society of Arts.
Anne joined Christie's House Sales & Private Collections’ department in 2006, moving to the Furniture department shortly thereafter to specialise in European furniture and works of art. Anne contributes to the development of the important European furniture sales and acts as head of sale for "The European Connoisseur" held twice yearly. Amongst her most recent highlights, is the rediscovery of the pair of Louis XV `clair de lune' vases attributed to Duplessis, which formed part of the Collection of William Beckford at Fonthill Abbey and were sold in "The Exceptional Sale 2013".
A French native, Anne was educated in France and the United States where she read law. She practised for several years in international law firms in Paris and London and speaks French, English, Italian, with good working knowledge of Spanish.
Giles Forster’s career at Christie’s began in 2005 in the Estates, Appraisals & Valuations department at King Street, followed by a move to the 19th Century Furniture and Decorative Arts department. Giles maintains an emphasis on 19th century furniture and sculpture but his broad responsibilities for cataloguing, photography and client liaison also encompass earlier English and European furniture and works of art. Personal highlights include the March 2008 sale of a cabinet formerly belonging to King Edward VII and instrumental involvement in achieving the world auction record price for a 19th century Italian micromosaic in April 2010.
Nic joined Christie’s South Kensington in 1984 as a porter, rising to Specialist Head of the European Objects Department before leaving in 1989 to set up his own successful antiques business. He returned to Christie’s South Ken' in 1993 as a Director and auctioneer for Christie's London. Over the years since his return Nic has overseen numerous collection sales, both in London and on the continent. He helped pioneer the Interiors and magalogue concepts, and was instrumental in opening the saleroom for seven-day-week operation. Nic is Head of the Interiors Department in London, and is an integral member of the South Kensington management team. Nic was appointed Deputy Chairman of Christie’s South Kensington in November 2007.
A self-described country house 'junky' and David Hicks obsessive, Orlando Rock started his career at Christie's London in 1990. Initially responsible for the sales of both Important French and English Furniture in London, he transferred to Christie's New York in 1998, where he oversaw a wide range of record-breaking sales-from Houghton, Bute and Longleat, to French furniture from the Alexander and Riahi Collection. In 2002, Orlando returned to London to head the newly-established Private Collection and Country House Sale Department. Orlando graduated with first-class Honours in History from the University of Bristol.
Simon joined Christie’s in 1992 as a furniture specialist after seven years at auctioneers Phillips. He became a director of Christie’s in 2005. Simon has a particular interest in early furniture (pre-1700) and has seen the three annual sales of Early Oak and Country Furniture grow and develop since the category was introduced in 1993. The sale category is now known as ‘Master and Makers’ and is part of the successful Interiors range of sale. Highlights over the years have included The John Fardon Collection (1994 and 1996), The Parry Collection (1997), The Boughton Monchelsea chest of circa 1380 (1999), Grimshaw Hall (2000), Bramcote Manor (2001) and most recently The Roger Warner Collection (2009). Simon is a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) (Art and Antiques professional group) and also on the vetting committees of The Olympia and The Battersea fairs in London.
Mark Stephen joined Christie’s in 1980 after having graduated from St. Andrews University with a degree in History, working as a porter and at the valuations counter before joining the Works of Art department as a junior specialist. He then left to work for a country auction room where he passed the qualifications to join the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors before returning in 2004 as a senior specialist in the Furniture and Works of Art department. Mark oversees the European Works of Art in the Interiors sales with a particular role to source and catalogue the early Metalwork and Works of Art in the Oak theme sales called ‘Masters and Makers'. Some highlights in this category include the David Little Collection of Important Early English Pewter in May 2007 and the collection of Roger Warner in January 2009.
Anna Evans joined Christie's in 2002 as a bids clerk in the South Kensington Bids Office shortly after qualifying with a First Class degree in History of Art & Architecture from the University of East Anglia (UEA). Instantly hooked by the excitement of the auction world, a year later, Anna moved into the Furniture & Works of Art Department, becoming a Junior Specialist in 2004 and Specialist in 2008. Anna has been involved in several highly successful single owner collection sales including the Michael Roberts Collection of Architectural and Garden Ornaments and Gipson's Grand Tour. She became an auctioneer in 2007 and currently co-leads the Style & Spirit Interior sales at Christie's South Kensington.
Nick started at Christie's South Kensington in 1998 as an intern, and joined the Furniture department in 2003 after spending four years as a furniture porter in the saleroom. In his current role as specialist, Nick focuses mainly on sourcing furniture for both the Interior sales and the Style and Spirit sale for which he is responsible for the furniture section. Aware of ever changing tastes, Nick is constantly on the look out for pieces with a history and interesting provenance which sit comfortably in the modern home. Nick graduated from Camberwell School of Art, with a BA (Hons) in History of Art.
Pippa Green began her career at Christie’s in 1996, after completing the Christie's Post Graduate diploma course and an internship at the Guggenheim Museum, Venice. After being a porter in the silver department and an administrator in the works of art department, Pippa was promoted to specialist in the Interiors department at South Kensington, cataloguing furniture and works of art. Since 2000, Pippa has catalogued works of art for combined and single owner collection sales such as the Alfred Dunhill Collection Part I (2004) & II (2006), the chess collections from the Allen Hoffrichter Collection (2000), and the Cholet Collection (2007). She has also been involved in various walking stick collection sales, most recently the Walking Sticks from the Collection formed by 1st Viscount Boyd of Merton (2008). In 2007 Pippa became a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.
Will Strafford, Senior International Specialist, European Furniture and Decorative Arts, has been based in New York since 2003 and was head of the European Furniture department from 2003-2112. Prior to that he ran the European Furniture sales in Christie’s King Street from 1999-2002 and worked as a European Furniture specialist in Christie’s New York from 1993-1999. The landmark sales he has worked on include Works of Art from the Wernher Collection (2000), the Collection of the Late Baroness Batsheva de Rothschild (2000, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection (2000), the Doris Duke Collection (2004), the Partridge and Segoura sales (2006) , the Van Cliburn Collection and the Collection of Djahanguir Riahi (2012). Mr. Strafford has a degree in English and History of Art, and more than twenty years of experience in the auction business.
Melissa Gagen joined Christie’s in 1990 and has been responsible for all sales of English furniture at Christie’s New York. During her tenure she has overseen many record-breaking sales such as the sale of the George III ormolu-mounted marquetry commode by Pierre Langlois ($2,532,500, 1998). In 1993 Ms. Gagen participated in the Attingham Country House Program and in 1998 joined The Royal Collection Studies Program. She also contributes regularly to Christie’s publications. Ms. Gagen brought to Christie's, five years of expericnce as a specialist in European Furniture Department. Ms. Gagen earned a B.A. degree in Economics at the University of Virginia.
Stefan Kist is the New York Director of European Decorative Arts which includes the European, English, and 19th Century Furniture and Works of Art, Silver, Porcelain and Carpet departments. He is also the International Specialist for Tapestries. Stefan originally joined the European Furniture department at Christie’s London in 1993 and relocated to the European Furniture Department in New York in 2002. He has been instrumental in several landmark sales at Christie’s including the $90 million collections of the Barons Nathaniel and Albert von Rothschild sale in 1999 which included the commode supplied to Louis XVI’s bibliothèque by Jean-Henri Riesener in 1778 which sold for $10,984,740, the collection of Ruxton and Audrey B. Love in 2003 which achieved a total of $22,576,538, and more recently in 2006, the sale of a selection of English and European Furniture, Old Master Pictures, Silver and Porcelain from Partridge, which achieved a total of $14,855,560.
William Russell joined Christie's in 2000, just in time for the spectacular sale of French decorative arts from the Riahi Collection that realized $40 million, the highest total for a single-owner sale of French furniture at auction. Two years later, he organized the Malmaison Sale of Roger Prigent's eclectic and chic collection of decorative arts from the 18th through 20th centuries. Since then, he has worked on many of the most important decorative arts collections sold by Christie’s. Mr Russell is also responsible for sculpture and works of arts – objects ranging in date from the 12th through early 19th Centuries - for both North and South America. He received his M.A. degree from New York University's Institute of Fine Arts, followed by fellowships at the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. From 1996-2000, he was the curator of the most important private collection in the Czech Republic, the Lobkowicz Collections at Nelahozeves Castle in Prague.
An auction house veteran, Anne Igelbrink has been a Decorative Arts specialist since 1994. She joined Christie's in 2000 as the Head of European Furniture at Christie's East and then spent six years as the primary appraiser for Decorative Arts in the Trusts, Estates and Appraisals department. Since re-joining the Furniture department in 2006, she has worked on both the English and European Furniture sales. Anne has been a guest lecturer at New York University’s Appraisal Studies program, a speaker at the National Conference of the American Association of Appraisers, and regularly appears on television as an appraiser on the Antiques Roadshow. She graduated with honors from Wellesley College and received a diploma from the Royal Academy of Art in association with the Christie's Fine and Decorative Arts course.
Simon de Monicault began his career in Christie’s European Furniture department in London in 2004. Later moving to the Paris department, Simon contributed to the successful sales of the Maître et Madame Jean Michard-Pellissier collection; the Monsieur René Smadja collection; as well as an ensemble of five masterpieces from the Qizilbash collection. Based in Paris, Simon continues to participate in the development of London sales, including the successful sale of the Marquis and Marquise de Ravenal collection from November 2007, which doubled its initial estimate achieving €6.8 million. Prior to Christie’s, Simon studied law and art history, beginning his career in Paris with the firm Lepic & Nazare-Aga.
Isabelle Degut joined Christie’s in March 2008 as a specialist in Early European Sculpture and Works of Art in London. Isabelle started her career in London in 2004 in another leading auction house in the Sculpture and Works of Art department where she was responsible for business getting and for developing their equivalent sales. Isabelle has since broadened and maintained strong relationships with the global network of European scholars and in particular French art historians. Isabelle leads sales and business getting activity in France, having re-located to Paris in 2009 and established Christie’s as the market leader in European Sculpture in France. She remains an integral member of the international sculpture department, assisting with sales in London. Her successes include the recent sale of The Collection of Jean-Joseph Marquet de Vasselot (2011), establishing a world record for a Medieval work of art sold at auction (€ 6.3 million for a carved ivory group of the Virgin and Child). Other spectacular sales to which Isabelle contributed were the Collection Yves Saint Laurent et Pierre Bergé (2009), and the marble bust of le marquis de La Fayette by Jean-David d’Angers (1788-1856) sold for €1.500.000 establishing a world record for the artist (2010). She contributes to the development of private sales in Paris. Isabelle was educated in France and England, studied Art Business and Marketing (Lyon, 2000) holds a B.A. in Art History (Goldsmith’s College, London, 2004) and follow a program on La Sculpture de Versailles at l’Ecole du Louvre. Isabelle speaks fluent French and English.
Hervé de La Verrie joined Christie’s London from the Galerie Vandermeersch, Paris, in 1995. In 1997 he joined Christie's France and founded the European Ceramics and Glass department, as well as played a key role in the opening of Christie’s Paris in 2001 with the sale of the collection of Charles-Otto Zieseniss. Since then, he has been integral in all of the major sales Christie’s has held for ceramics and glass, contributing to many record prices including the 2008 sale of a Hispano-moresque albarello in faïence from the end of the 14th centrury (€360,000) and the 2005 sale of a pair of Meissen herons, made in 1732 for the Japanese Palace of Augustus the Strong in Dresden (€5.6 million), which achieved the world record for European ceramics
A graduate of the Institut d’Etudes Supérieures des Arts (IESA), Hippolyte has consolidated his training in art history by studying law at the Université Panthéon-Assas. Having been active for almost 10 years in the art market, he began his career at Galerie Marie Watteau, before joining Massol and Artus Enchères as inventory officer. His seven years’ experience at Drouot allowed him to acquire a depth of expertise. Hippolyte joined the Furniture department at Christie’s Paris in February 2012.
Mathilde de Backer joined the department as Junior Specialist in December 2013. Mathilde graduated from the Ecole du Louvre with a degree in the Art Market and she has also a Bachelor of Archaeology from Paris IV-Sorbonne. Mathilde wrote a dissertation on a study of the European Sculpture market, and previously interned in the department from January to July 2013
A graduate of the University of Sydney, majoring in Fine Arts and with a diploma in Museum Studies, Ronan Sulich expanded his gallery and museum experience with six years working in a London auction room, returning to Sydney in 1995 to work for Christie's. In the ensuing 16 years he has been the Sydney decorative arts expert and auctioneer and since 2006 the Australian representative sourcing consignments for the international salerooms of Christie's.