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Alex Branczik to assume role of Chairman of Modern & Contemporary Art, Sotheby's Asia
Alex Branczik, Chairman of Modern & Contemporary Art, Sotheby’s Asia. Courtesy Sotheby's.

HONG KONG.- Sotheby’s today announces changes to its Fine Arts leadership team in Asia, reflecting the company’s strategies of investing in its market-leading Asian business and promoting ever greater global integration. Alex Branczik and Max Moore will move to Hong Kong from London and New York respectively to assume key roles within the company’s activities there. Alex Branczik will take on the newly created role of Chairman, Modern & Contemporary Art, Asia; while Max Moore will become Head of Contemporary Art Sales, Asia. They assume their new positions as Yuki Terase, the current Head of Contemporary Art, Asia, confirms her plans to leave the company in July to pursue her independent interests.

In his new role, Alex Branczik will act as the strategic lead for Modern and Contemporary Art in Asia, driving Sotheby’s expansion of this critical field in a key growth region for the company. Modern and Contemporary Art sales in Hong Kong have seen exponential growth in recent years. Alex will build on this momentum to develop this market even further, bringing to bear his deep expertise, team-leadership, and long-established relationships with collectors in Asia. In his new role, he will partner both with the Sotheby’s Global Fine Art Leadership Team, and with the Senior Leadership Team of Sotheby’s Asia.

At Sotheby’s since 2004, Alex became Head of Contemporary Art for Europe in 2016, and has played a pivotal role in shaping the global sales strategy for the company’s market-leading department, while driving countless high-profile consignments. Beyond spearheading major sales by Western artists, Alex has been crucial in introducing Contemporary Asian art to international audiences, projecting their works onto the global stage and achieving multiple auction records for artists such as Liu Ye, Liu Xiaodong, Zhang Xiaogang and Liu Wei. In 2013, Alex helped facilitate the US$23 million sale of Zeng Fanzhi’s The Last Supper, then the auction record for any work by a Chinese contemporary artist.

As Head of Contemporary Art Sales in Asia, Max Moore will work with Alex and the talented Asia Contemporary Art team to continue to grow the business, building on the leading market position established by Yuki Terase and the department. Max brings several years’ experience of working in the Contemporary team in New York, where most recently he spearheaded the sale of The Fungible Collection, by Pak – a ground-breaking NFT initiative of a kind that he will continue to lead in his new role. His passion and commitment to continued innovation make him well positioned to lead the Sotheby’s Contemporary Art business in the fast-evolving Asian market.

The arrival in Hong Kong of Alex and Max coincides with the departure of Yuki Terase, who over the last decade has been instrumental in taking the Contemporary Art market in Asia to the next level. During her tenure as the Head of Contemporary Art, Asia, Yuki together with international colleagues has led the department to achieve consistent market leadership in the region season after season, most recently with the unprecedented HK$1.1 billion sale total achieved in Spring 2021. Over the years, she has nurtured interest among many Asian and international clients, securing numerous record-breaking blue-chip works for important collections and greatly increasing the exposure of Western Contemporary art in Asia. Yuki has also spearheaded and curated multiple innovative and successful thematic sales, and her final project at Sotheby’s will be the collaboration with music megastar Jay Chou, culminating in an auction series in Hong Kong in June.

Charles F. Stewart, Sotheby’s CEO, said: “Asia is our highest growth region at Sotheby’s, and there is immense potential for further expansion in Modern and Contemporary Art. As such, it makes sense to send some of our strongest specialists to further invest in the region and ensure global integration. Alex Branczik is one of the most senior and talented specialists at Sotheby’s, and Max has proven himself in New York as a dynamic contemporary art leader and specialist. Together with our strong team already in place in Hong Kong, I am excited to see what they will bring to serve our clients even better going forward.”

Nathan Drahi, Managing Director, Sotheby’s Asia, said: “I’m very excited to welcome Alex and Max to the team in Asia to continue growing our business and reach new heights. While I will certainly miss Yuki, I want to really thank her for her contribution to Sotheby’s and wish her all the best in her next endeavours.”

Commenting on her decision to venture into the entrepreneurial world, Yuki Terase said: “I am so grateful to everyone at Sotheby’s for all their support over the past decade, and am incredibly proud of all that we have accomplished together. My decision to pursue a new chapter was a difficult one to reach, but I feel sure I will remain a close ally to the company and my colleagues. Having worked closely with Alex and Max, I am confident that they will bring a fresh vision and new vigor to Asia, and help take the business to new heights.”

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