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Katherine Thatcher Biography – Art & Antique Advisory Group

Hello, I’m Katherine Thatcher / Art Expert

Katherine is an art consultant providing collection needs & asset management advice to high wealth individuals, corporations, non-profits & museums. Services include acquisition, appraisal, brokerage, curating, interior design, estate planning, estate sales, expert witness testimony, exhibition lending, asset management, speaking appearances, & art & antique collecting tours. Nationwide clients have relied on Katherine for extended projects, including collection management, museum lending programs, & interior design with an asset appreciation focus incorporating art with antiques & special objet’d art. Appraisals can be produced for insurance, estate planning & donation. She is currently serving as Expert Witness on the California Superior Court case involving the estate of Michael Jackson versus his former business manager (Tohme vs. Branca & McClain). Her career began at the Smithsonian Museums, Sotheby’s in London, an appraisal firm in San Francisco & Ellingson Interior Design prior to starting her own firm combining her diverse experience.

She began her career at the Smithsonian in the National Museum of American Art & Portrait Gallery with an eye toward curating before moving to the Office of Development & then Smithsonian Associates, the cultural and educational program division of the Smithsonian Institution. After completing intensive appraisal methodology, training & accreditation courses with the American Society of Appraisers, she moved to London for her Masters Degree in Fine & Decorative Arts focusing on connoisseurship & valuation. While at Sotheby’s she participated in large estate sales such as Warwick Castle & Syon House.  She then became appraiser & estate sale manager in San Francisco at Hobart Associates, working for collections with significant confidentiality needs. In 2001 she founded her own consultancy firm for a range of clients from individuals, corporations, & non-profits to museums, but particularly serving those desiring anonymity & discretion due to celebrity, high net worth status, sensitive asset management or special projects. All business has been discreet & word of mouth referral. By request, she then began to expand her services to include a.) collecting tours (Art Basel, Maastricht TEFAF, Round Top, FIAC, Frieze, Isle sur la Sorgue & Paris fairs, & trade only antique shows worldwide), b.) client interior styling & acquisitions, c.) brokerage of art, antiques, cars, & jewelry between clients, & d.) speaking appearances. For 3 years she was Consultant Project Manager for Ellingson Interior Design, where she pioneered a program for site-specific commissioned art within corporate collections & housing community clubhouses & model homes with a focus on asset appreciation for the entity paired with increased recognition for the artist.

Her work has been enriching & varied, with intriguing projects that range from helping Carl Schramm of the Kauffman foundation collect art with local Kansas based guidelines to helping a client with a high boy (chest on stand) in San Francisco that became the most expensive piece of early American furniture sold at auction, to orchestrating collection & installation display of 100 antique circa 1800-1900 Bocce balls from estates in France for a high profile client with a passion for Bocce.

Katherine loves passionate collectors & interesting assignments. She has handled innumerable celebrity estates & special collections, as well as an amazing diversity of art, artifacts, antiques, ceramics, silver & furniture, including the unique & one of a kind:

  • The original Millennium Falcon spaceship model from Star War
  • The batons of a world-famous Symphony conductor
  • A hand carved wooden ship model created onboard a Dutch East India trading ship
  • A client with an extensive collection including the works of Edward Gorey, Wagner memorabilia, artifacts from the Andrea Doria, & arguably the world’s largest Philadelphia Phillies memorabilia collection
  • The blueprints of the Titanic
  • The original Maltese Falcon model from the film
  • The only Giacometti Walking Man sculpture outside of a museum
  • The lyrics & bling rings of a rapper’s estate
  • The body of work of a photographer hired to live in Yellowstone National Park for 10 years to record the indigenous wildlife
  • Limited Edition 1/5 Breitling Bentley with others owned by Steve Wynn & Jay Z
  • A collection of 100 Irish paintings lent to the Kennedy Center for their millennium exhibition
  • A 10 carat Canary Yellow diamond engagement ring
  • Arguably the largest collection of early San Francisco prints & photographs
  • Brokerage of works including Rothko, Picasso, Pollock, Renoir, Matisse, Derain, Braques, Dali, Brancusi, Twombly, Haring, Giacometti, Modiglini, Rembrandt, etc.
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