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First editions re-covered: Sotheby's announces auction to benefit Quentin Blake's House of Illustration
Peter Blake, “Through the Looking-Glass, and what Alice found there by Lewis Carroll”, est. £2,000-3,000. Courtesy Sotheby’s.

LONDON.- This December, Sotheby’s London will offer a collection of 33 first editions of classic books, each with a beautifully original dust-jacket, created and generously donated by leading artists and designers to benefit House of Illustration.

Each artist selected a book they felt a strong connection to and then created a new dustjacket or artwork in response to it. The re-worked classics include Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis, Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass, J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, D.H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers and George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

Artists include Quentin Blake, Maggi Hambling, Raymond Pettibon, Lauren Child, Peter Blake, Chris Riddell, Richard Wentworth, Axel Scheffler, Audrey Niffenegger, Neil Gaiman, George Shaw, Paula Rego and Shaun Tan.

The auction includes the only piece of original artwork created by Quentin Blake for Beatrice Potter’s The Tale of Kitty-in-Boots that has ever come up for sale; a cover created by Gerald Scarfe with two new illustrations for The Making of Pink Floyd The Wall; and, ahead of his regeneration in the Dr Who Christmas special, Peter Capaldi has chosen to design a cover for Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis.

House of Illustration is the world’s only public gallery solely dedicated to illustration and graphic arts with a creative programme of exhibitions, talks and events. A registered charity receiving no public funding, it works with schools across London on projects with young people that inspire creativity and enable them to communicate visually, overcoming barriers such as language, literacy levels and special educational needs. It is the only UK gallery commissioning illustration work for public display and runs the only UK residency for illustrators and graphic artists.

Ahead of the sale, all works will be on display at Sotheby’s London (34-35 New Bond Street) from 8-11 December 2017. In total, thirty-one artists have donated to the sale.

Quentin Blake, “The Tale of Kitty-in-Boots by Beatrix Potter”, est. £3,000-5,000 Quentin Blake, “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame by Victor Hugo”, est. £3,000-5,000

Quentin Blake is a world-renowned, multi-award-winning British illustrator who has written and illustrated over 300 books, including some of the greatest children’s book of the last fifty years. He was the UK’s first Children’s Laureate and is the founding trustee of House of Illustration.

Raymond Pettibon, “My Main Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse”, est. £4,000-6,000
Raymond Pettibon is a leading contemporary artist whose work explores a wide spectrum of American high and low culture. His work was first used in advertisements, zines and record covers during the 1980s, and is now exhibited widely throughout the US and abroad.

Gerald Scarfe, “The Making of Pink Floyd The Wall”, est. £3,000-5,000
Gerald Scarfe is the UK’s most celebrated political cartoonist. He was the political cartoonist for The Sunday Times for 50 years and has designed numerous operas, plays and ballets for some of the most high-profile productions of the last 30 years. The Making of Pink Floyd The Wall is the definitive book of Pink Floyd’s album, tour and film The Wall, created in collaboration with Scarfe.

Lauren Child, “Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren”, est. £2,000-3,000
Lauren Child is an award-winning, bestselling writer and artist whose books are known and loved the world over. Child is the creator of many much-loved characters, including Clarice Bean, Ruby Redfort and Charlie and Lola. She became the UK Children’s Laureate in 2017-2019 and was awarded an MBE for Services to Literature in 2010. Child rarely sells her original artwork.

Peter Blake, “Through the Looking-Glass, and what Alice found there by Lewis Carroll”, est. £2,000-3,000
Peter Blake is one of the leading artists of his generation and is recognised as one of the founders of British Pop Art. One of his best known works is the album cover for The Beatles’ Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. In 1981 he was elected a member of the Royal Academy and in 2002 he was knighted for services to art.

Maggi Hambling, “The Sea, The Sea”, est. £2,000-3,000
“I share with the author the inspiration of the sea”

Maggi Hambling is one of Britain’s foremost contemporary artists, known for her portraits, paintings of the sea and her celebrated and controversial public sculpture. Her work is represented in all major British collections from the British Museum to Tate.

Peter Capaldi, “The Metamorphosis… by Franz Kafka”, est. £1,500-2,000
“I chose to illustrate the cover of The Metamorphosis because I find the story so powerful, the imagery unforgettable, and the sadness at its heart completely human”

Peter Capaldi is a BAFTA-award-winning British actor, writer and director. He is best known for being the twelth and current actor – until December 2017 – to play Doctor Who in the BBC TV series, and for the role of Malcolm Tucker in the BBC comedy series The Thick of It.

Shaun Tan, “Animal Farm by George Orwell”, est. £2,000-3,000
“Animal Farm remains the book with the deepest subconscious influence on my work as a storyteller: the absurd fantasy that tells us basic truths about human nature, regardless of time, place or political colour”

Shaun Tan is an award-winning illustrator, writer and film maker whose books have won numerous awards, including the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, the biggest prize in children’s literature, and an Academy Award for his 15minute animated short film The Lost Thing.

David Downton, “Dr No. by Ian Fleming”, est. £ 1,500-2,000
“The truth is I picked Dr No not for the book, but for the chance to draw Ursula Andress, my idol since I was a teenager”

David Downton is one of the world’s leading fashion artists. His work has appeared in V Magazine, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, The Times, The New York Times and Vanity Fair. Downton has been Artist in Residence at Claridge’s Hotel in London since September 2011.

Richard Wentworth, “White Teeth by Zadie Smith”, est. £2,000-3,000
“Zadie Smith, a Londoner, writes about what I see. I reversed the dust-jacket on my copy of White Teeth, now a plain wrapper. I have trussed and mirrored it”

Richard Wentworth is one of the UK’s most influential artists, working primarily with sculpture and photography. He has played a leading role in New British Sculpture since the 1970s and his work has been widely exhibited internationally with major solo exhibitions.

George Shaw, “Sons and Lovers by D.H. Lawrence”, est. £2,000-3,000
“It read like a documentary of my life until I left home…I think it is stories like these that root such fancies within the real world that have shown me that it is possible to make our own rich journey through this strangeness that if life”

George Shaw is a leading contemporary artist. Nominated for the Turner Prize in 2011, Shaw is renowned for his highly detailed approach and suburban subject matter. He was Associate Artist at the National Gallery from 2014-2016.

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