New Yorker Covers Return

This fall at Swann, we continue our tradition of offering a spectacular selection of original New Yorker covers and cartoons. The cover of the New Yorker is one of the most recognizable cultural icons of the twentieth century. So important is cover art to the identity of the magazine that to celebrate their 90th anniversary in 2015, they published nine covers in one week.

 

Lot 282: Arthur Getz, Lincoln Banner, 1948 Republican National Convention, casein tempera, published June 19, 1948. Estimate $4,000 to $6,000.

Lot 282: Arthur Getz, Lincoln Banner, 1948 Republican National Convention, casein tempera, published June 19, 1948.
Estimate $4,000 to $6,000.

 

From our Illustration Art Specialist, Christine von der Linn: “The desire to own a physical piece of the city zeitgeist drives collectors to seek out these little gems of illustration art. Interest continues to grow with each sale we hold, as do the prices for covers by the most sought-after illustrators such as Constantin Alajalov, Peter Arno, Arthur Getz, Ilonka Karasz, William Steig and Saul Steinberg.”

 

Lot 279: Arthur Getz, Election Morning, casein tempera, published November 1, 1952. Estimate $3,000 to $5,000.

Lot 279: Arthur Getz, Election Morning, casein tempera, published November 1, 1952. Estimate $3,000 to $5,000.

 

In the current sale is an especially meaty run of political covers, just in time for the 2016 presidential election. Beginning with Arthur Getz’s Lincoln Banner, 1948 Republican National Convention, the political covers trace the tumultuous history of national elections with snarky poise. Further Getz covers include Election Morning, 1952, and Voting Booth, 1962.

 

Lot 280: Arthur Getz, Voting Booth, casein tempera, published Novermber 3, 1962. Estimate $2,500 to $3,500.

Lot 280: Arthur Getz, Voting Booth, casein tempera, published November 3, 1962. Estimate $2,500 to $3,500.

 

The earliest New Yorker cover on offer is a study for Leonard Weisgard’s Horse Races, circa 1937. In this cover, close to the launch of the magazine, the iconic stripe at the left edge of the cover is much thicker than in later iterations. The strip is there to make room for the binding.

 

Lot 303: Leonard Weisgard, Horse Races, gouache and colored pencil, circa 1937. Estimate $800 to $1,200.

Lot 303: Leonard Weisgard, Horse Races, gouache and colored pencil, circa 1937. Estimate $800 to $1,200.

 

Twenty years later, a variation of the theme comes in the form of Ready to Run, a bright and cheery 1956 cover by Ilonka Karasz.

 

Lot 284: Ilonka Karasz, Ready to Run, tempera, published June 9, 1956. Estimate $6,000 to $9,000.

Lot 284: Ilonka Karasz, Ready to Run, tempera, published June 9, 1956. Estimate $6,000 to $9,000.

 

Covers with poignant cultural observations depict more than horse races: Laura Jean Allen’s 1973 cover, Metropolitan Opera in the Snow, shows the current opera season highlights. In the published version, Tosca is replaced by La Bohème to fit the January 1973 opera schedule, and the people have been removed.

 

Lot 273: Laura Jean Allen, Metropolitan Opera in the Snow, acrylic on canvas, published January 23, 1973. Estimate $800 to $1,200.

Lot 273: Laura Jean Allen, Metropolitan Opera in the Snow, acrylic on canvas, published January 27, 1973.
Estimate $800 to $1,200.

Laura Jean Allen, Metropolitan Opera in the Snow, published cover with revision, January 27, 1973.

Laura Jean Allen, Metropolitan Opera in the Snow, published cover with revision, January 27, 1973. Condé Nast.

 

Be sure to check out The New Yorker section of the sale, and join us for Drawing Sides: A Timely Conversation on Political Cartoons, an evening with cartoonists Lee Lorenz and Edward Sorel on September 26.