Railway poster of John Constable set to fetch more than £1,000 at New York auction

A unique railway poster featuring John Constable is set to fetch more than �900 when it goes under t

A unique railway poster featuring John Constable is set to fetch more than �900 when it goes under the hammer at a New York auctioneers this month. Picture: SWANN AUCTION GALLERIES - Credit: Archant

A unique poster featuring Suffolk’s most famous painter John Constable could fetch more than £1,000 when it goes under the hammer at a New York auction this month.

John Constable

John Constable

The poster, which was created in 1937 to mark 100 years since artist’s birth, goes up for auction at Swann Auction Galleries in the big apple on Thursday, October 26.

The artwork, which is expected to be sold for between $1,200 and $1,800 (£900 and £1,350), is one of 238 up for sale celebrating the golden age of steam, 28 of them from the UK.

However, Nicholas Lowry, president and director of the auctioneer’s vintage poster department, says the Constable poster really stands out among the auction lots.

“The Constable poster is a bit of an outlier,” he said.


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“Most of the posters are paintings of where the train is heading - scenes of the sea, cities or architecture.

“But this one is of Constable himself, painting Flatford Mill.

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“It is all about him.

“It is of Constable creating one of his most famous paintings, using the same perspective, as seen by the artist himself.

“It is such an interesting idea.

“It is very clever, it is like looking into the past.

“We are estimating it will go for between $1,200 and $1,800.”

The poster was originally created by English artist Sir Henry Rushbury as a painting which was then reproduced as a lithographic plate.

Usually best known for his etchings of buildings and architecture, the Constable portrait was stark contrast to his better known works.

The New York auction includes rare surviving work from some of the very best commercial artists of the time including French artist Jean Dupas.

Dupas’ views celebrating Richmond and Camden Town are pitched to sell at between $4,000 and $6,000 a piece (£3,100 and £4515).

Mr Lowry said although the Suffolk rail poster wasn’t the most expensive lot on offer, there had been a real buzz around it.

“Lots of people have been talking about it,” he said.

“It has been noticed not only by people who are from the UK or interested in trains but from the art world as well.

“It appeals to people who may be Constable fans too.”

Visit www.swanngalleries for more information.

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