Mostly Credited As: Simon De Pury
Birth Name: Simon de Pury
Simon de Pury is one of the art world's leading figures, renowned for his legendary performance on the auction podium and for his deep and longstanding knowledge of the global marketplace.
De Pury is Chairman and Chief Auctioneer of Phillips de Pury & Company, the leading global auction house for Contemporary Art, Design and Photography, and still owns a significant share in the business after selling the majority in October 2008 to the Mercury Group, Russia's largest luxury retail company
De Pury joined Phillips in 2001 when his art advisory firm – the Geneva-based de Pury & Luxembourg Art, which he had started in 1997 with Daniella Luxembourg – merged with them
A spirited and highly successful career at Sotheby's preceded this chapter. De Pury was appointed Chairman of Sotheby's Switzerland in 1986 and later became Chairman of Sotheby's Europe. This function, which he performed with his inimitable zeal and enthusiasm -- coupled with sharp business acumen -- saw him conduct important sales all over the world. These included the Thurn und Taxis sales in Geneva and Regensburg, the Margrave of Baden sales in Baden-Baden, the Palazzo Corsini sales in Florence, part of the Jacqueline Onassis Kennedy sales in New York, and all major Impressionist and Modern Art evening sales in both New York and London since 1994. He was also the initiator and auctioneer for the historical and first international auction to be held in 1988 by Sotheby's in Moscow
From 1979-86, de Pury was curator of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection and organized numerous exhibitions not only in the Villa Favorita in Lugano, Switzerland, but also in major museums around the world. He was also responsible for the coordination of four key exchanges between Baron H.H. Thyssen-Bornemisza – then the most important collector of his time – and the State Hermitage, the Pushkin Museum, the Russian Museum, the Tretyakov Gallery and the Kremlin Museum in Russia. Prior to this, de Pury had started his career at Sotheby's in 1974 and was active in their London and Monte Carlo offices before opening the Sotheby’s office and auction venue in Geneva.
De Pury studied the Japanese painting techniques of “Sumie” and “Nihonga” at the Tokyo Academy of Arts. He was born in Basel, Switzerland, and is the father of four grown-up children. He lives between London and New York.