Interview with the founders of the Crait+Müller study
What is your background?
Thomas Müller : “My father used to go to flea markets and the Chartres auction house where I did my first internship as a high school student after choosing the "art history" option. I then went on to study art history at university without knowing exactly where I was going and my interest quickly turned to the art market. I worked for artists and then studied law at Paris 1 and after an internship at Artcurial and working at the Chartres auction house, I graduated the same year as Guillaume in 2010.”
Guillaume Crait : “I come from a family of collectors who love Cubism and Art Deco. I started my studies at a business school in Paris, the EBS (European Business School). In 2003 I moved to New York and then to Madrid spending most of my time visiting art galleries and museums. Back in Paris, and after graduation, I decided to take the competitive examination for the École du Louvre. These were three difficult but exciting years, at the end of which I passed the auctioneer's exam. After several internships, notably with TAJAN and in Versailles, I met Thomas.
Do you have any favourite artistic eras or mediums in art?
Thomas Müller : “Contemporary art for me. I started working with the artist Ben. At 18, I was a contemporary art enthusiast and was already buying works! One of the first was an ink by Debré that I bought in Tours. In order to build up a collection and later to buy my load, I worked for seven years at the Saint Arnoult toll booths at night and on Sundays! For a while, I also worked during the day at the Chartres auction house. It was exhausting but I was passionate about it. I didn't go on holiday, I didn't go to restaurants, all my savings went into buying paintings, especially in the auction room. I assisted the artist Mathieu Mercier for a year in exchange for a work that I particularly wanted.
Guillaume Crait : “I love books, painting and music. I have always been very curious, François Tajan challenged me to put together a sale of comics, I managed with a telephone and a computer, the sale was a success. I am also very interested in contemporary art, especially post-war geometric and lyrical abstraction.”
How did the Crait+Müller study come about?
"We both held the gavel in various studies in Paris and in the provinces for several years (Versailles Enchères, British Auction Cars, Wapler). By chance, we were led to work together on a few cases. During this period, we considerably developed our network of sellers. It was then that we decided to combine our skills and launch our own business in 2016, and the establishment of our office in the Drouot district was an obvious choice."