Thursday 18 April 2024

The Birth, Growth and Influence of London’s Great Auction Houses

By Grant Ford

The auction house is the public face of the art market and the prices it raises can make headlines around the world. Grant Ford looks at the origins and development of London’s great auction houses. He studies notable characters in their histories and explores the controversies. We follow their growth from small individual enterprises to international institutions. With one eye on the past, Grant shows insight into current contemporary practice and how they aim to situate themselves in the art market of the future.


Grant is an Independent Fine Art Advisor, Private Curator and Representative. He is the senior paintings specialist for BBC’s Antiques Road show in the U.K. and is particularly well known in the fields of Victorian, Pre-Raphaelite, Irish, Scottish, Sporting and European Art. Grant spent 30 years at Sotheby’s where he was responsible for Sotheby’s Victorian Art Department as well as being a Senior Director and Head of British and Irish Art Post 1850. He now represents a number of prestigious family collections. He regularly lectures in the U.K., Ireland, U.S.A., Canada and elsewhere and has written for many publications.