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

Melodious Mechanical Marvels: Antique Music Boxes

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.” ― Plato * This Arburo Orchestrion revolutionized the automated music industry by utilizing stand-alone instruments in its ingenious mechanism. Each was special ordered and made entirely by hand.* Music has the… Read More »

A Commanding Presence: The Art of William Bouguereau

* This portrait beautifully demonstrates the master's ability to capture nuances of personality and mood.* “For me a work of art must be an elevated interpretation of nature. The search for the ideal has been the purpose of my life. In landscape or seascape, I love above all the poetic motif.”  –William Bouguereau The name… Read More »

Time for Tea! Exquisite Tea Caddies

No other practice evokes British sophistication and elegance quite like the drinking of tea. It is hard to believe that this now-common beverage was once an incredibly expensive commodity that could only be enjoyed by nobility and the social elite. These connoisseurs would soon demand elaborate and luxurious accoutrements to… Read More »