Meet our Alumni

Perry Trethaway

Content Manager, Contemporary Art, Sotheby's

Q. What brought you to Christie’s Education? 

I was applying to various jobs and graduate programs my senior year of college, and Christie's Education seemed to be the best of both worlds – providing both a business-focused education as well as opportunities for practical work within the art world. In college, I was particularly drawn to modern and contemporary art, and the Modern and Contemporary Art and the Market program seemed almost tailored to my interests. When I interviewed with Dr. Véronique Chagnon-Burke, I was sold! 

Q. How did your internship experience and your classes shape your career path?

My classes solidified for me that I wanted to be in the art world. I suppose there's a chance that spending so much time with art and the history books may have made me realize I didn't love it as much as I initially thought, but it actually just confirmed for me that I wanted to be in the art world. My internship within the Impressionist & Modern Art department at Christie's confirmed for me that I wanted to be at an auction house. I had previously worked in galleries and artist's studios, without feeling completely hooked; however, from the first day of my internship, I knew I had found the right thing.

Q. What would your advice be to our current students looking to start their careers in the art world?

Don't be afraid to tell people what you're looking for. I loved interning at Christie's and was applying for full-time jobs at the auction house when my internship ended; however, I wasn't getting many bites. I was vocal with my friends and family's friends about my desire to work in an auction house, and a family friend ended up connecting me to a Sotheby's executive. I interviewed to be her assistant and had a job offer ten days later. So, don't be afraid to tell people what interests you, what you're looking for, and where you want to be because you never know who may know someone. Formal networking is great, and cold-emailing people is often productive, but don't forget to tell all your friends and family too!

Q. How long have you worked with your current company and what position(s) have you held there?

I have been with Sotheby's 6 and a half years. I started as the executive assistant to the Chief Marketing Officer, a position I held for two years. Then Sotheby's Chief Operating Officer asked me to be his executive assistant, a position I could not turn down! After a year with him, I transitioned to the Proposals department as a writer, a role I held for two years before applying to the Contemporary Art department. My role now within Contemporary Art is a hybrid of specialist and content manager for the Evening Sale team; my responsibilities include writing for and managing the production of the evening sale catalogue, coordinating and executing all marketing promises for our consignors, and liaising with the Proposals team when we are pitching for business.

Q. How should a new student make the most of their time at CE?

Form relationships with your professors and take advantage of any opportunity. After my first three months at Christie's Education, I was asked by Dr. Véronique Chagnon-Burke to intern for 5 days in the Impressionist & Modern Art department at Christie's right before the holidays. Although my formal internship would not begin until the following year, I leapt at the opportunity so as to better position myself when applying for the role in the spring.