Specialist, Fine Art Department
Raphaël Chatroux is the Head of Sale for Freeman's American Art and Pennsylvania Impressionists auctions. He also serves as a Specialist in the European Art and Old Masters department, with a particular focus on 18th-century French paintings and sculptures.
Chatroux joined Freeman’s in 2016 as a Fine Art department intern. Later that year, he was the Samuel M. Freeman II Fellowship recipient and was promoted to cataloguer. Since his arrival, he has developed an expertise for a wide range of both American and European works of art. He worked closely with Chairman Alasdair Nichol on the successful sales of The Collection of Heidi Bigham Stott and Virginia and Stuart Peltz in 2020 and 2021. Chatroux is associated with the recent world records obtained for artists Cecilia Beaux, Emma Fordyce McRae, and Bo Bartlett. He was also instrumental in the acquisition of a Berthe Morisot oil by the Musée Marmottan Monet in Paris. As a native of France, Chatroux has worked in various art centers in Paris including Hôtel Drouot, where he oversaw auctions of fine wine and good spirits and the Palace of Versailles, where he conceived and curated several bilingual audio-guide tours. Chatroux graduated from Paris-Sorbonne University with a degree in art history; he also holds a master’s degree in art law.
Meeting so many different collectors, with their own history, their passion and their philosophy, is what I find the most rewarding. We are taught every single day how an object can have a strong, powerful, and very personal meaning to the people we meet. It is the best way to give meaning to our work, to push you to do the best work on behalf of your clients, and to keep you grounded. Selling art is a people's business, and human emotions and interactions are what I find the most rewarding.
The Portrait of Angèle in profile by Arthur B. Carles sold as part of the Ottenberg Collection. My great-grandmother shared the same name as the model, and I have not obsessed over a painting as much as this one since it sold in 2018.
I started as an intern, then became the last recipient of the fellowship award. After a year, I transitioned to the role of cataloguer, which quickly transformed into specialist. I am now head of sale of our American Art auctions.
I am always excited to sell works by Arthur B. Carles. Likewise with any canvases by Daniel Garber. I was the most excited when we sold a painting by Berthe Morisot, as well as the beautiful White Interior by Carl Moll.
Stumbling upon a lost or unrecorded work, and understanding its meaning and importance as you study it more closely. Such was the case with Sylvia Shaw Judson's Bird Girl, which was found during a routine appraisal, and rapidly became the Fine Art Department's obsession for an entire season.