Bonhams has appointed Magnus Renfrew as deputy chairman, Asia and director of Fine Arts, Asia.
Renfrew will be responsible for defining the strategy for Bonhams in Asia relating to the Fine Arts and will oversee the established departments of Classical, Modern and Contemporary Art in Asia. Renfrew will sit on the board of Bonhams Asia and will report directly to Malcolm Barber, co chairman of Bonhams Group and CEO Hong Kong Board.
Renfrew will join Bonhams in September following his role as Director Asia and Member of the executive committee of Art Basel where he was responsible for its Hong Kong edition and for the participation of galleries, collectors and the wider art community from Asia in Art Basel shows worldwide.
Renfrew was founding Fair Director of ART HK – Hong Kong International Art Fair and oversaw its extraordinary development from its inception in 2008 through its acquisition by MCH Group (the parent company of Art Basel) in 2011 and its successful transition through its first two editions as Art Basel in Hong Kong in 2013 and 2014.
Magnus Renfrew has approaching 20 years’ experience in the international art world. He was previously Head of Exhibitions for Pearl Lam’s Contrasts Gallery in Shanghai and prior to that an auction house specialist with Bonhams where he was instrumental in setting up their first sale of Contemporary Asian Art in London in June 2006.
Renfrew holds a First Class MA (Hons) in Art History from the University of St Andrews and was awarded the OE Saunders Class Prize. He has been regularly recognized for his contribution by industry media and in 2012 he was listed alongside Art Basel directors Marc Spiegler and Annette Schönholzer at number 16 in the Art Review Power 100. In 2013 Renfrew was named as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.
Renfrew said: “I am excited to be returning to Bonhams to take up this new position and relish the opportunity to drive forward the business for the fastest growing auction house in the most rapidly developing art market in the world.”
Robert Brooks, co-chairman of Bonhams, said: “We are delighted to welcome Magnus back to Bonhams in this newly created role. Magnus has an exceptional reputation and network within the international art world. He has played an instrumental role in the development of the art market in Asia over the past decade and we look forward to working with him to drive forward Bonhams’ business in Asia.”
Renfrew will operate from Bonhams’ new saleroom in Hong Kong on the 20th floor of One Pacific Place, the first dedicated saleroom created by any auction house in Hong Kong.