The Hound of the Poster-Bills

For Sherlock Holmes, the essential clue was the dog which did not bark.  In the case of this blog, the attentive observer might have noticed that not every auction gets a mention on here.

Studio Seven vintage British railways poster 1957 dog tickets
Studio Seven, 1957, for sale at Onslows est. £500-600

Sometimes this is simply because I can’t think of a thing to say about them; sometimes, however, there is a motive.  Which is usually that there are some posters that we want to buy up for sale and I’d rather not be pushing up the prices by broadcasting their desirability all over the internet.  Sorry about that.

Hence my stony silence about the most recent Van Sabben auction on November 12th.  While this was mostly the usual cornucopia of foreign posters and Dick Bruna (which is of course allowed, they are Dutch after all), in amongst that were a handful of interesting British posters, with the added bonus that, being sold abroad, they might actually be affordable.

Prize exhibit was this, which is yet another example of posters that I have fallen in love with as a result of blogging about them.

F H K Henrion big rabbit vintage World War Two Home Front poster

I’m slightly concerned that the ickle fluffy bunny being presented as food may turn Small Crownfolio vegetarian if we get it framed, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Even better, though, it wasn’t a single lot.  Along with it (and not illustrated on their website) came this classic too.

Lewitt HIm vintage world war two propaganda poster shanks pony

And as if that was not enough, there was an Ashley Havinden too, albeit with slightly less wall appeal.

Henrion death off the road vintage road safety poster 1950s

Once we’d decided to buy that, it only seemed sensible to put a couple of other bids in too.  With the result that we now also own this Reginald Mount, which I think is just post-war.

REginald Mount vintage propaganda poster waste paper builds houses CoI

That also wasn’t alone, but came with this related Mount/Evans.

Mount Evans vintage waste paper salvage poster propagandas world war two

Along with a third that I’ve never seen before but rather like.

Mount Evans vintage save gas and electricity post war propaganda poster austerity

Oddly, this lot cost us more than the Henrion/Lewitt-Him triple bill, which is a bit strange if you ask me.

Now you might think it a bit stranger that this Unger GPO poster, however stylish, was the most expensive lot of all, especially as it is only 10″ x 15″.

Hans Unger vintage GPO pack parcels carefully poster 1949

But then just look at what it came with.

Lewitt Him vintage post early world war two GPO poster 1948

Lend a Hand on the Land Eileen Evans World War Two propaganda poster

Harella henrion vintage post war fashion poster

Play safe vintage ROSPA safety poster

The total bill was a bit eye-watering but the chance to get posters as good as these doesn’t come up very often.  At least that’s what I’m telling myself, even if we have to buy a slightly cheaper house as a result.

Disclaimer: Mr Crownfolio pointed out that a reader of this blog might think that we were over-monied plutocrats just buying posters hither and thither because we can.  This is, however, not the case.  We don’t own yachts, right now we don’t even own a single house never mind one in every resort.  We don’t even go out to dinner that much.  We just buy posters.

  • Woof. Sorry about both of those. About once a year we have a poster-buying moment and go very slightly mad. That was it in action.

  • But you did it with style. There was a very good Ashley Havinden exhibition on at the gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh a couple of years ago. Lots of original artwork and a good catalogue.
    And if I don’t win the Henrion then are you keen on selling that nice Reginald Mount “danger holes ahead” poster? I am happy to offer more than the 55p….

  • Sadly I never saw the Havinden exhibition, but do have the catalogue. Which makes me wish I had seen the exhibition.

    We clearly do need to sell a few posters off before we are overwhelmed, but I can’t imagine having the time to think about that until the New Year. If the Mount is on the list, I will be in contact…

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