Bill Rau

Considered one of the foremost experts on 18th- and 19th-century European and American antiques and fine art, Bill Rau has worked in the family-owned gallery full-time since he was 21 years old, and part-time since the age of 14. After graduating from the University of Colorado in 1982 with a degree in Business, he returned to his hometown and began a highly successful career as one of the most respected antique experts and gallery owners today. Bill's extensive knowledge and reputation as a leader has not only brought him success in the antiques business, but accolades from his peers. An avid collector as well an authority in his field, Bill has helped to place several items in museums around the world, including the New Orleans Museum of Art, the San Antonio Museum of Art and the Instituto Ricardo Brennand in Receife, Brazil. He has written numerous articles published in a wide variety of antique journals, lectured around the world at museums and events, and was the youngest senior member ever accepted to the American Society of Appraisers.  

Bill is also the author of the widely acclaimed, qunitessential resource on 19th-century European painting. Published in 2012, 19th Century European Painting, From Barbizon to Belle Epoque, offers a comprehensive overview of the century's artistic innovation in a knowledgeable and savvy fomat and is filled with an impressive array of extraordinary illustrations and artist biographies. All proceeds from the sale of the book directly benefit the Rau for Art Foundation, dedicated to the promotion of talented emerging artists at the high school level in the New Orleans region.

Today, Bill serves as President of the Royal Street Guild, and is a member of the Wedgwood Society of New York and Boston, the American Cut Glass Association, the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, the Music Box Society International, the Better Business Bureau, the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce, and the Young Presidents' Organization.

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Bill Rau

Opulence Defined: The Kashmir Sapphire

* Immense rarity and beauty define this awe-inspiring untreated 18.50-carat Kashmir sapphire. This emerald-cut natural wonder is accompanied by 1.30 carats of diamonds and set in platinum and 22K yellow gold.* Veiled by its legendary reputation and virtually unobtainable rarity, Kashmir sapphires are counted alongside the… Read More »

Continental Inspirations: The Furniture of William and Mary

* The precision afforded to these creations make them as much a work of art as a functional piece of furniture.* * Oysterwood veneers, parquetry and bun feet distinguish this William and Mary period chest.*   When the Dutch William III and his wife Mary II overthrew King James II in the 1688 Glorious Revolution,… Read More »

An Age of Transformation: Women in Nineteenth Century Art

* George Morren, Le Renouveau (The Renewal), Circa 1892* * Jéan-Leon Gérôme, Leda and the Swan, Circa 1895* This is the second of a three part series of blog posts preceding our exhibition Innocence, Temptation and Power: The Evolution of Women in Art, on view at M.S. Rau Antiques from March 27 – May 4. From the… Read More »