Illustration Art: June 9, 2022 Auction Highlights

Lot 66: Tasha Tudor, illustration for Frances Hodgson Burnett’s novel, The Secret Garden, watercolor & graphite, 1962. Estimate $7,000 to $10,000.

The Spring Illustration sale features a rich selection of children’s picture book art from the late Emily and Sam Bush. Also included are theater set and costume design, advertising art, works from notable picture books, literary publications, cartoons, comics and more. Those seeking exceptional works of illustration will have the opportunity to virtually attend on June 9. 

Lot 86: Edmund Dulac, “The Lady Bedr-el-Budur.”, illustration published in Sindbad the Sailor & Other Stories from The Arabian Nights, watercolor, gouache, pen & ink, 1914. Estimate $8,000 to $12,000.

The Emily & Sam Bush Collection

Emily and Sam Bush opened Bush Galleries in Norwich, Vermont in 1984 as one of the earliest retail shops specializing in original children’s book art. They eventually expanded to Boston and Carmel, California. Though they also handled international artists, they remained loyal to promoting the work of New England illustrators.

Lot 31: Hilary Knight, The Mysterious Gallion, illustration published on the covers of Cricket Magazine, watercolor, pencil and white tempera, 1984. Estimate $3,000 to $4,000.

This selection includes works by Caldecott winners Trina Schart Hyman and Alice and Martin Provensen; Cricket Magazine covers by Hilary Knight; Tasha Tudor’s iconic portrait of Mary Lennox for Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic The Secret Garden.

Theater Illustrations & Set Design

For fans of the late Stephen Sondheim, we are thrilled to offer Al Hirschfeld’s famous New York Times caricature of the Tony Award-winning Sweeney Todd. There is also a gorgeous set design by Alexandra Exter for the 1921 Kamerny Theatre production of Romeo and Juliet.

Lot 158: Al Hirschfeld, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, illustration for the 1979 Broadway production at the Uris Theatre, pen, ink and graphite. Estimate $15,000 to $25,000. 
Lot 155: Alexandra Exter, stage design for “Romeo and Juliet.” created for the 1921 performance at Alexander Tiro’s Kamerny (Chamber Theatre), gouache, 1921. Estimate $10,000 to $15,000.

Related Reading

Additional Children’s & Picture Book Illustrations

Other highlights include: My Grandfather’s Farm, an illustration by then 18-year-old N.C. Wyeth from a series he created for his maternal grandparents; a study by Jessie Willcox Smith for The Five Senses; a highly detailed drawing by Eleanor Vere Boyle for The Story Without an End; and a fascinating archive from the collection of illustrator Bob Childress, containing production material for Fun with Our Family, a title in the renowned Dick & Jane readers.

Lot 68: N.C. Wyeth, War, illustration from the series My Grandfather’s Farm, graphite, ink & gouache, circa 1900-02. Estimate $3,000 to $5,000.

Advertising, Book & Magazine Illustration

From Golden Age illustration through contemporary narrative art, this section includes artwork from literary classics, popular magazines, poster maquettes, and original advertising art.

Cartoons, Comics & Animation

This popular section includes cartoons by the irreverent Don Martin, Charles Addams, William Steig, Richard Taylor, and James Thurber; comic strips including Felix the Cat, Blondie, Terry and the Pirates, and Pogo. Animation artwork and drawings for The Simpsons, The Beatles, and the studios of Walt Disney and Hanna-Barbera round out the sale.

Lot 190: Don Martin, Early One Evening in Atlantic City, illustration published in Mad Magazine #196, ink, 1978. Estimate $4,000 to $6,000. 
Lot 215: James Thurber, “Are there any — you know — Cucarachas?“, cartoon for The New Yorker, ink, 1936. Estimate $4,000 to $6,000.

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