ATBL Appoints New President

David Redden of Sotheby’s Assumes Top Post

David N. Redden

Lansing Lamont, David N. Redden, Dyke Benjamin

In his more than three decades at Sotheby’s David N. Redden, who on January 1 assumed the presidency of the American Trust for the British Library, has engaged in virtually every aspect of the high-end auction world.
He succeeds Lansing Lamont who held the post for ten years.

Mr. Redden has been responsible for some of the most creative and record-breaking auction at Sotheby’s where he is currently vice chairman for North and South America.
He came to the attention of the American Trust  through his friendship with the late William T. Golden. Mr. Redden had already achieved prominence by presiding over some of the most famous sales in Sotheby’s history.

He overseered the estate sales of Andy Warhol and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, disposed of Duchess of Windsor’s jewels, and the imperial Easter eggs from the Forbes Faberge’ Collection. He engineered the sales of ancient coins and shipwreck treasure; four battle flags of the American Revolution; the papers of Martin Luther King Jr.; and the most complete Tyrannosaurus Rex fossil  ever found.

More important to the bibliophilic world, Mr. Redden has sold Shakespeare First Folios; first printings of he Declaration of Independence; Washington’s own copy of the Federalist Papers; and the only privately owned copy of Magna Carta. Some years ago he presided over the disposal of the most valuable library ever sold in America, that of H. Bradley Martin, a prominent collector and member of the Phipps clan; the collection is noted for it’s impressive works on ornithology.

Mr. Redden  was born in China, the son of a U.S. diplomat and a New Zealand mother. His great-uncle was the English poet laureate, Alfred Austin, who in 1896 had succeeded Alfred, Lord Tennyson in the post. Mr. Redden was educated primarily in Europe.

He joined Sotheby’s in 1974 as a cataloger trainee in Chinese and Japanese artworks. Subsequently he was asked to manage wide range of auction areas including books and manuscripts, prints, photographs, Asian works of art, rare stamps and special sales.

Mr. Redden’s work has attracted over the years considerable media attention. He was subject of a half-hour documentary by the BBC, and was profiled by the New York Times.  In addition to his trustees role at the ATBL, he serves or has served on the boards of the Grolier Club, the Folger Shakespeare Library, the Black Rock Forest Consortium, and Scenic Hudson.

Mr. Redden lives in New York City wit his wife Jeannette and their two children, Stephen and Clare. They have a home as well in Cornwall-on- Hudson, N.Y.

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