We’ve hardly recovered from Christmas here, but nonetheless, the auction year is already gearing up, beginning with the GCR auction on February 7th.
There are posters. Quite a lot of posters.
A rather large number of them are of this ilk; pretty post-war depictions of landscapes and towns courtesy of British Railways.
Although I do quite like the way it equates history with a bad pong. That’s the visit of Charles I, by the way.
I do have one gripe about the auction, though, which is that not very much effort has been put into ascribing dates, or even artists to the posters. Take the Salisbury smell, above. That’s down in the catalogue as being Anonymous, but it took me all of two minutes on Google to discover the date, and that it’s by Claude Buckle. A piece of information you’d think might increase its value, and hence the auctioneer’s commission. And all of the dates on here are ones that I have found, not them. Poor show.
But I mustn’t grumble too much. For a change, there are actually a few nifty bits of graphic design in amongst the conventional pretties. This example is actually pre-war.
I’d like to think that the Sav is short for Savignac, but as I can find another, 1946, railway poster with the same signature but not of anything like the same quality, I am inclined to suspect not.
This next, while good design, is probably a bit too effective for most people’s taste.
Somewhere in the back of my mind is a feeling that I used to know who that poster was by, and I think it’s Pat Keely, while the internet is hinting that it might be by Leonard Cusden. But if anyone out there knows better, please do say.
This Hans Unger is considerably cheerier, and a great deal more desirable.
I have just been to that London by train; this is how you may imagine me travelling. Including the hat.
While this is rather good of its kind too.
As has been the case with the last few railway auctions I’ve looked at, there are also a handful of World War Two posters included, of which this is my favourite.
It looks a bit like a Beverley Pick, although I have some nagging memory that either Henrion or Zero did a lot of the Wrens advertising at the time. Still, it’s a World War Two poster, so the chances are that we’ll never know for sure.
And finally, a conundrum, in the form of an entirely new (to me) poster for Ramsgate.
Surely this has to be Chapter Four of Alan Durman’s Ramsgate romance, with the baby all grown up and playing. And Mrs Ramsgate has bought herself a new swimsuit at last.
Tantalisingly, the NRM don’t give an artist for their copy of the poster, but the date is 1961, two years after Durman’s couple were holding their baby up in the surf. How can it be anything else?
And even if it isn’t, it’s still a bargain at that estimate. What are you waiting for?