Due to its strategic location in Europe, its cultural baggage and the multilingualism of its inhabitants, Belgium has an enviable position in the global art trade. Within a stone’s throw of the Antwerp Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Auction House Bernaerts acts as a pole of attraction for many national and international art lovers and collector who are finding their way to the Southern district of Antwerp. After a major renovation of its buildings in 2012 and an expansion in 2017 the auction house aims for a total experience by organizing events, concerts and special exhibitions on contemporary art. “A thing of beauty is a joy forever “is one of its creeds.
Founded in 1974 as a small antique shop in Lier, Auction House Bernaerts has become one of the leading auction houses of the country. It organizes five large live auctions per year, all focused on certain themes.
The jewel in the Crown of the young and dynamic team is the auction of the most expensive painting ever hammered by a Belgian auctioneer: ‘ Oiseau de Ciel ‘ by René Magritte, sold after the bankruptcy of Sabena. The painting was sold for € 3 815 000. Thanks to a rigorous selection, a solid scientific know-how, as well as the development and maintenance of an international clientele Auction House Bernaerts has succeeded to maintain its excellent reputation with regard to the organization of its auctions. Its specializations are the paintings and sculptures of great European masters, Art Deco and Art Nouveau art, the Applied Arts dating from its most successful period to the Design period of the 21st century, the Works on Paper and the Old Masters.
Other references: the collection of paintings by old masters of the Antwerp Jesuit college (1997), the collection of modern art British Petrol (1998), the avant-garde collection of Knight René Victor (1997), the contents of the Castle Battenbroek near Malines, the Archive of Paul-Gustave Van Hecke /E. Langui (2008), the acclaimed thematic auctions ‘ Around Antoon Van Dijck ‘ (1999), the simultaneous sessions between Tokyo, Warsaw and Malines (1989), the bankruptcy of Sabena (2003), the Rubens-find (2016), etc.
The family business is convinced that its tailor-made approach makes it the most appropriate partner to handle the auction of your estate. In a society in constant and rapid evolution with daily updates in technology, Auction House Bernaerts continues to cherish the beauty and/or the relevance of a work of art and to respect its value. On the other hand, the circular nature of an auction system is also an environment where the historicity and the uniqueness of a work of art can be explained more in detail. The love of art almost automatically leads to the love of the profession.