Phillips opened a new auction house and exhibition space in exclusive Berkeley Square, London. The official opening will take place during next month's Frieze Art Fair week. The relocation is reportedly part of an ambitious plan to propel Phillips beyond its third-place position among art world auction houses.
In addition, Edward Doleman was named as chairman and CEO of the company late in July. Since then, Doleman—the former CEO of the Qatar Museum Authority and chairman of Christie's International—has overseen a new global growth strategy for Phillips, which includes new office and exhibition spaces in Paris and a new office in Berlin. Doleman called the opening of the new 73,000 sq. ft. building in London "potentially a game changer."
Phillips' new London's headquarters will mirror its New York City premises on 450 Park Avenue. The relocation puts Phillips back in the middle of the action, so to speak. The building's main entry is at the northwest end of Berkeley Square, as well as having an entrance on Davies Street, where Gagosian has one of its two London show rooms. Both Sotheby's and Christie's (Mayfair) have their auction rooms on nearby New Bond Street. Bonham's is close by too.
The lower ground floor, also double-height, has been designed to accommodate exhibitions, auctions and private events and houses private sky boxes overlooking the auction room.
Phillips London's inaugural sale in the new building will be its Contemporary Art Evening Auction, which will take place on October 15th.
Phillips will occupy a total of 31,000 sq. ft. of the building initially. The move follows recent Phillips office relocations in Europe, including a Parisian office and exhibition space on Rue du Bac and a new Berlin office on Kurfürstendamm.