About Us | Phillips

About Us

Phillips: where the world’s curious and bold connect with the art, design, and luxury that inspires them. As a leading global platform for buying and selling 20th and 21st century works, Phillips offers dedicated expertise in the areas of Modern and Contemporary Art, Design, Photographs, Editions, Watches, and Jewelry. Auctions and exhibitions are primarily held in New York, London, Geneva, and Hong Kong, with representative offices based throughout Europe, the United States, and Asia. Phillips offers a regular selection of live and online auctions, along with items available for immediate purchase. Phillips also offers a range of services and advice on all aspects of collecting, including private sales and assistance with appraisals, valuations, and financial planning.

History of Phillips

Harry Phillips founded the auction house in 1796 in Westminster, London. Phillips gained international recognition by selling paintings from the estate of Queen Marie Antoinette and household items from Napoleon Bonaparte, and it remains the only auction house to have ever held a sale inside Buckingham Palace. Harry Phillips was an innovator who combined business acumen with showmanship, introducing elaborate evening receptions before auctions – a standard practice in the auction business today.

Ownership of the company passed through Harry’s son and successors through the 1800s and early 1900s. By the 1970s, Phillips had expanded its categories to sell fine art, furniture and estate collections.

Bernard Arnault of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton purchased the company in 1999 and shortly thereafter merged with esteemed private art dealers Simon de Pury and Daniela Luxembourg. The new team introduced sales of watches, jewels and design alongside Impressionist, American, Modern and Contemporary works of art. In 2002, Simon de Pury acquired a majority stake in the company.

In 2008, a majority stake of the company was acquired by the owners of the luxury retail group, Mercury. By the end of 2012, the acquisition was completed, and the business moved uptown from Chelsea in New York. October 2014 heralded the opening of a new London headquarters at 30 Berkeley Square in Mayfair.

In July 2014, Chief Executive Officer Edward Dolman joined Phillips after a 27-year career at Christie’s. Bringing a wealth of experience, Mr. Dolman attracted highly qualified senior leaders from across the industry. Shortly after the start of Mr. Dolman’s tenure, the firm launched Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo in November 2014, which has become the global market leader for the finest collectors’ watches at auction, under the leadership of Aurel Bacs and Livia Russo. Phillips expanded to Asia and held its first auctions in Hong Kong in 2015, and it currently presents all categories including art, design, jewels and watches, in the fast-growing Asian market.

In 2021, Phillips moved its New York headquarters to new state-of-the-art galleries at 432 Park Avenue and, in 2023, the company opened the first purpose-built auction space in Hong Kong with the opening of its new Asia headquarters in West Kowloon. The same year, the company also launched Dropshop, the innovative digital platform offering limited-edition releases of primary market art and objects in partnership with the artists, collaborators, and brands defining contemporary culture.

Now, with Global Chairwoman Cheyenne Westphal and Deputy CEO Amanda Lo Iacono working alongside Mr. Dolman, the company is poised to continue its growth trajectory. 2021, 2022, and 2023 saw Phillips’ highest annual sale totals in the company’s 228-year history, all surpassing the billion-dollar threshold. Today, Phillips is modernizing collecting experiences by tapping into the energy that sits across culture. As a premier destination for the curious and the visionary, Phillips offers categories spanning Modern & Contemporary Art, Design, Editions, Photographs, Jewels, and Watches.