Toomey & Co. Auctioneers Joins Rago/Wright
Rago/Wright is pleased to announce that Chicago auction house Toomey & Co. will join the brand, building on the company’s continued momentum and growth in the industry. As with Rago/Wright’s 2021 partnership with LA Modern Auctions (LAMA), Toomey & Co. will maintain its name while all four houses work together to share technology, expertise, and marketing efforts. Based in the suburb of Oak Park, IL, the Toomey & Co. office and galleries will relocate to Wright’s Chicago headquarters at 1440 W. Hubbard St. in the fall of 2022.
“The business I began 40 years ago has evolved significantly in the last four decades, and we’re proud to be embarking on an exciting new chapter, which we are confident will benefit our brand as well as the industry and its clients,” says John Toomey, President of Toomey & Co. “Joining forces with Rago/Wright expands our ability to serve our clients, extends our competitive advantage, and positions us for future growth,” Founded in 1987, Toomey & Co. is a leading and trusted presence in the art and design markets. Now under the leadership of Lucy
Toomey and John Walcher, Toomey & Co. offers several auctions per year with departments including early 20th century and modern design, fine art, jewelry, silver, and timepieces.
A renowned specialist in objects of the Arts & Crafts Movement, John Toomey will join David Rago, who is a preeminent authority in 20th century decorative ceramics and design, in a formidable merging of knowledge and talents. Bolstering Rago/Wright’s capacity in this field, this new partnership perfectly complements Wright’s focus on Modern design, strengthening the combined brand’s ability to offer strategic opportunities for buying and selling works from a wide range of eras and movements.
Further, Toomey & Co. specialist Riley Humler will contribute to the reputation that Partner David Rago has built for Rago/Wright as a leading auction house for early 20th century American ceramics and art pottery. With more than 30 years of auction experience, Humler is President of the American Art Pottery Association, has appeared regularly on Antiques Roadshow, and, in 1991, curated and sold the Glover Collection, considered the most important sale of Rookwood pottery to date.
“Joining forces with John Toomey and Riley Humler is a decades-long dream,” says David Rago. “With this merger, we are launching an American Arts & Crafts team unlike any other in the industry.” Rago/Wright Partner Suzanne Perrault echoes the sentiment, “It is incredibly exciting to grow our expertise and expand our repertoire. We are delighted to finally come together with Toomey & Co. and to collaborate in 20th century design.”
Richard Wright will remain in his role as CEO of the combined company, which will continue to offer curated auctions of art, design, ceramics, glass, jewelry, and watches with bespoke digital presentations and state-of-the-art bidding technology. The knowledge and experience of Toomey & Co.’s team will broaden the combined brand’s service to buyers and sellers on an expanded national and international scale, and will consolidate reputable sources for an even stronger voice in the art and design market.
“Through the merger with Toomey & Co., we are delivering on our vision to combine the strongest independent auction houses with a shared database and web platform,” says Wright. “Our combined expertise, client service, and technology is unrivaled.”
So far in 2022, with a team of 95 across Chicago, Lambertville, New York, and Los Angeles, Rago, Wright, and LAMA have presented 44 auctions with sales totaling more than $60 million, setting world records in multiple categories. Rago/Wright has an exciting fall schedule, including their first auction with Toomey & Co. in October.
About Toomey & Co.
Toomey & Co. Auctioneers is considered one of the premiere specialty auction houses in
the country and has been conducting auctions since 1987. In addition to carefully curated Art
and Design auctions, they have featured collections from Governor Jim Thompson, selected works from the Roy and Sarita Warshawsky Collection, The Paul and Terry Somerson Collection, and, most recently, The Ira Simon Collection to benefit the Art Institute of Chicago, with many rare and notable examples of art and design from the Art Nouveau, Aesthetic Movement, Arts
& Crafts, and Art Deco periods. Since rebranding in 2018, Toomey & Co. has nearly doubled annual sales.
Rago auction was founded in 1984 by David Rago, the preeminent expert in the field of American ceramics and art pottery. With more than five decades of experience handling 20th and 21st century works, David Rago and Suzanne Perrault are nationally recognized experts appearing frequently on PBS’ Antiques Roadshow. Rago handles a broad range of material and its close proximity to New York makes it a favorite destination for many East Coast collectors.
Richard Wright founded Wright auction in 2000. An innovator and pioneer in the auction world, The New York Times called Wright the “maverick of design.” Wright is known around the world for its creativity and quality of presentation. From the sale of the iconic Four Seasons Restaurant interior to Marcel Breuer houses, Wright has successfully produced hundreds of auctions of art and design.
About LA Modern Auctions
LA Modern Auctions was founded in 1992 by curator and trusted consultant, Peter Loughrey, and was the first auction house to specialize in the selling of 20th century modern art and design.
Together, Peter and Shannon Loughrey quickly established their firm as a trusted authority in the fields of art and design offering quality, vetted material at a variety of price points.