Deputy Chairman, International Head of Furniture
He joined Christie’s in 1980 and was made Director in 1990, head of the department in 1995 and Deputy Chairman of Christie's UK in 2000. He 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, he pioneered the Exceptional sale, which in the inaugural sale in London 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 for £45 million. The Exceptional sale which is the leading sale of best decorative arts is now held in New York, London and Paris. In celebration of the three hundredth anniversary of Thomas Chippendale’s birth he curated a dedicated sale which included a pair of Dundas sofas by Chippendale that subsequently surpassed the highest auction record.