Typewriter dream of elysian fields

Less eBay, more auctions today, which makes a change.  The main excitement, at least it is if you are me, is a pair of Graham Sutherland posters up for sale at Wooley and Wallis in Salisbury.  This is the catalogue image.

Graham Sutherland How Sweet I roamed London Transport poster 1936

From the text, it appears that the other poster on offer is this (image from the London Transport Museum site).

Graham Sutherland field to field London Transport poster 1936

While I am sure that the catalogue knows what it’s talking about, it’s nonetheless a bit odd, because both of these designs were originally conceived as London Transport pair posters.

London Transport how sweet I roamed pair poster 1936 Graham Sutherland

Graham Sutherland from field to field London Transport pair poster 1936

Given the choice, I think I’d rather have the two on offer.  Not that this opinion is in any way relevant, because the estimate is £2,500 to £3,500, a sum of money which is completely unaffordable if you are currently pouring all of your savings into restoring a knackered old building.

I have to say, though, that if we weren’t being so daft, I’d be tempted.  I don’t know why – after all we’ve never spent anything like that much on a poster before.  So then I doubt my motives for wanting these; is it because it is they are lovely posters, or is it because I like the status of owning not just any old poster, but a Graham Sutherland London Transport Poster.  Am I still in thrall to the idea of the artist even despite buying mass produced images?  Quite possibly.

All of which navel-gazing sent my mind back to the mahoosive Christies London Transport Sale, where the other great Graham Sutherland poster is on offer for £1,500-2,000.

Graham Sutherland London Transport poster 1936

Which I also love, but am also not going to buy, because we need carpets and that’s the end of it.  Except to say that I should probably return to Graham Sutherland’s posters on here one of these days.

Anyway, back to the matter at hand.  Lockdales, an auction house in Ipswich, have a handful of British Railways posters coming up in October.  They are actually quite to my taste, as they’re mostly post-war and just a little bit quirky.

British Railway poster, Broadstairs, The resort with a charm of its own
est. £150-250

British Railway poster, Frederick Griffin, Southend on Sea, Westcliff on Sea, leigh on Sea, Thorpe Bay, Shoeburyness
est. £150-250

Lune Valley 1950 poster Percy Drake Brookshaw
est. £100-150

The third one is by our old friend Percy Drake Brookshaw, and rather fine it is too.

I am mildly amused by this lot, which has been subject to some rather comprehensive cropping and so is described only as “town by an ocean”.

town by ocean auction lot British Railway poster, Alasdair Macfarlane

Shall we turn this into a parlour game?  Can anyone name that railway poster?  (I can’t).

To round this off, there are one or two things on eBay that are worth your time and attention, starting with this.

Derrick Sayer London Transport artwork

Which is a piece of artwork for a London Transport poster, by Derrick Sayer and dating from, so the listing says, the 1940s.

It doesn’t look as though it was ever produced, as there’s no trace of it in the London Transport Museum collection.  Mr Crownfolio says that it reminds him of this Schleger.

Hans Schleger 1937 Highway Code exhibition Charing Cross

I think he has a point there.  The colours also remind me of James Fitton’s work at about the same time.

James Fitton World War Two blackout poster London Transport

I could go on, but I won’t.

Finally, this.  A classic architectural work, with an early Tom Eckersley, well Eckersley Lombers cover to boot.

THE MODERN HOUSE IN ENGLAND Marcel Breuer WALTER GROPIUS Tecton cover Tom Eckersley

Currently at £12.50, but with four days to go, I think it will go higher.  And I have some more Eckersley for you in a week or so too.

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5 Comments

  1. DR G
    Posted September 20, 2012 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    I haven’t found the poster but it is this artist – Alasdair Macfarlane:
    Born Ballymartin, Tiree 26/9/1902; Gaelic speaking, later bilingual. Self-taught artist. Moved to Glasgow 1922. Worked on ships for P Henderson & Co.. Joined Clyde Navigation Trust in 1929. Drew ships for Evening Citizen newspaper, Glasgow from 1929. Exhibited 1932-7. Served with Ministry of War Transport in London 1940-45 and re-joined Clyde Navigation Trust. Produced private and commercial work latterly and ship drawings for Glasgow Evening Times 1950-60. Died from heart attack 1960. Produced posters for BR.
    I think it is this ferry that is shown:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/24718842@N04/3098860926/
    the MV Loch Seaforth which ran between Stornoway to Mallaig and the Kyle of Lochalsh.
    I should be getting on with important things!

  2. James
    Posted September 20, 2012 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    Here you are, I found it yesterday; Tobermory. http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/6810691

  3. crownfolio
    Posted September 21, 2012 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Excellent, thank you both. Perhaps we should have more quizzes on here!

  4. mm
    Posted September 21, 2012 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Do those first two Sutherlands have a thinly disguised masculine and feminine feel to them…or is it just my dirty mind?!?

  5. crownfolio
    Posted September 21, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    Nope, not just your dirty mind! I can’t see how I missed that!

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