Phillips Is Moving Its New York Headquarters Next Year—But Only Around the Corner
The fast-growing auction house is going for a major upgrade on Park Avenue.
Phillips auction house is making a big move, but it’s hardly going far.
The auction house, currently situated on Park Avenue at 57th street, is heading to 432 Park Avenue—practically next door—into a building billed as “the tallest residential tower in the Western hemisphere.”
The move, which will happen in fall 2019, will involve the auction house taking over 55,000 square feet of commercial space, including the “Park Avenue Cube,” a white-glass modernist structure that is lit up at night and holds more than 5,000 square feet of space on two floors on the northwest corner of 56th Street and Park Avenue.
Phillips will also occupy a double-height, column-free underground concourse of more than 30,000 square feet with direct access from Park Avenue, and executive office space with an entrance on 40 East 57th Street, across from the Four Seasons Hotel.
Among the international art press, Phillips is notorious for its current auction sale room in which a large column obscures the view of what’s happening on the auction rostrum, something that the New York Times’s Robin Pogrebin poked fun at in announcing the news, writing: “Yes, you often have to peer around a column to glimpse the art that’s up for sale at Phillips, given the poor sight lines in the auction house salesroom at 450 Park Avenue.”
Real estate titan Harry Macklowe, who designed the property with architect Rafael Viñoly, also touched on this, telling the Times, “I kind of built this space for Phillips, because I always thought their space was inadequate for an auction gallery.” (Separately, Macklowe is now at the center of a divorce proceeding that including a $700 million trove of artworks that a judge ordered last week must be split and sold.)
Under the leadership of CEO Ed Dolman, formerly the longtime CEO of Christie’s, Phillips has experienced substantial growth in the past four years, including strengthening its team of contemporary art specialists, opening an office in Hong Kong, and holding regular auctions in Asia. In 2014, the company also opened a new 31,000-square-foot showroom and European headquarters in London at Berkeley Square.
The move in New York “marks a significant milestone for our company, our employees and our clients, who will all benefit from the many opportunities presented by this expansion,” said Dolman in a statement. “The new location offers a state-of-the-art exhibition space to display contemporary art, design, watches and jewelry, and matches the unrivaled setting we offer collectors in our London gallery in Berkeley Square in Mayfair,” he added.
Along with auctions and exhibitions, the space will feature a cafe, auditorium, and private sales galleries. The architect for the space has yet to be named.
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