Christie’s was the first major auction house to postpone sales and close most locations to curb the spread of coronavirus. As of Friday, March 13th, it has indefinitely postponed 15 sales scheduled to take place across New York and Paris, in March and April this year.
Guillaume Cerutti, CEO, Christie’s said in a statement: “In the days ahead, we will be communicating a number of necessary changes to our usual course of business, including further changes to our sale calendar. These decisions are undertaken with a great degree of care and in close consultation with our clients.”
On Monday, March 16th, the auctioneer also announced the closure of the following offices: Brussels, Buenos Aires, Chicago, Dallas, Dubai, Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Houston, Los Angeles, Madrid, Mexico City, Miami, Milan, Monaco, Moscow, Munich, New York, Rome, San Francisco, Santiago, Sao Paulo, Stuttgart, Tel Aviv, Toronto, Vienna, Zurich.
Amsterdam, Geneva, and Paris are working with a reduced number of staff. Christie’s in London remains open and will host two sales this week: Prints & Multiples on Wednesday (March 18th) and Chieveley House, Berkshire and Five Private Collections on Thursday (March 19th).
Phillips, too, has decided to postpone all its sales and events in the Americas and Europe, at this stage, until mid-May.
“As we continue to monitor the situation, our spring auctions in Hong Kong, scheduled for 29th May – 2nd June, will proceed as planned,” Phillips CEO, Edward Dolman and global chairwoman, Cheyenne Westphal, said in a statement.