For more than 255 years, Christie’s has been a cultural leader and, as such, we must challenge ourselves to be a leader in responsible culture as well. Across our business—from the experience of our workplace to the works we sell and celebrate, to the partnerships, people and philanthropic and educational initiatives we support—Christie’s is committed to building and sustaining equitable, diverse and inclusive experiences and perspectives. Respect has been, and always will remain a core value for our company and our values are clear: we condemn discrimination in all forms.
We believe it is our responsibility to actively use our position in the artworld, both as a global business leader and as an employer, to better amplify under-represented voices and support positive cultural change. This will enable us to continue to operate at the vanguard, protecting and rethinking the past, while working to shape the future so that we can best serve our clients, partners, employees, and the art community.
While we are proud of the concrete steps we have taken, we continue to hold ourselves accountable to be better. We are listening carefully to our employees, clients, partners and artists to hear their ideas on how to further transform and innovate our organization as we move forward together.
Expanding our internal knowledge and thinking
While acknowledging that it will take time, our employees and senior leaders are energized and committed to creating positive change. Regional and global ED&I committees and employee affinity networks help to engage the organization through listening, facilitating discourse and advancing ideas on how to address issues relating to Gender, Disability, Ethnicity, LGBTQIA+ and Socio-Economic differences.
Training programmes help us to better understand the issues faced by groups and individuals and provide employees with tools to help drive behavioural change in the organization. Building on mandatory Unconscious Bias training in 2020, in 2021 we provided workshops on Covering, Active Bystander and Allyship and ran a pilot of Accidental Sexism to be rolled out in 2022.
We promote talent regardless of gender, age or ethnicity and have reviewed our recruitment processes to ensure equity across our hiring practices. Our global paid Internship programmes and UK Apprentice Scheme help us to engage with talent from broader cultural, social and economic backgrounds as well as with disabilities.
Diversifying the art we sell
Although we recognize we need to do more, over the last year alone we are proud to have increased the proportion of works we showcase by female and BIPOC artists. We have grown our partnerships with organizations and individuals whose missions and initiatives enable and promote more diverse engagement in the art world including our collaboration with the 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair the curator Destinee Ross-Sutton to present the Say it Loud exhibition and sale series, creating Black, Bold, British curated by Aindrea Emelife and supporting NAACP, whose mission is to combat racism and discrimination.