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15 Posters with Reserves Under $1,500

15 Posters With Reserves Under $1,500

Our 88th Rare Posters Auction contains a number of beautiful designs that won’t break the bank. Preview our top posters with reserves of $1,500 and under before they go to auction on November 13.

12. Tokyo 1964 Olympics.
By Yusaku Kamekura (1915-1997)
28 5/8 x 40 7/8 in./72.6 x 104 cm
Est: $1,000-$1,200

Grace, strength, and determination—these unifying factors define Olympic resolve. And in this piece, the contrast between the frothing butterfly stroke and glassine waters dazzles the eye with hypnotic simplicity. The founder of the Nippon Design Center, Kamekura was one of a small group who helped chart the course of Japanese graphic art after World War II.

37. A Guinness a Day.
By John Gilroy (1898-1985)
39 3/4 x 59 1/2 in./101 x 151.2 cm
Est: $2,000-$2,500

A Guinness a day might not keep the doctor away, but it sure does make for an enticing daily ritual.

39. The Saturday Evening Post / July 26, 1941.
By Norman Rockwell (1894-1978)
22 x 28 1/8 in./55.7 x 71.2 cm
Est: $1,400-$1,700

Turning the delivery van into the official Saturday Evening Post vehicle, this charmingly flirtatious design has a rosy-cheeked pinup girl appear blissfully unaware of her effects on the blue-collared set.

59. Pneu Vélo Michelin. ca. 1913.
By O’Galop (Marius Rossillon, 1867-1946)
31 1/2 x 47 3/4 in./80 x 121.2 cm
Estimate: $1,400-$1,700

“Bibendum’s ride over a rocky road underscores the claim that Michelin tires can withstand even the bumpiest roads. The pictured road marker is a reference to the Petition to Number the Roads, Michelin’s 1912 campaign to bring order to the roadways of France; on March 17, 1913, the nation’s Department of Public Works passed legislation to number every public thoroughfare. By 1926 Michelin was publishing France’s first regional guides, boosting tourism and further helping to coordinate the use of the road network” (Discount, p. 129).

115. Air India. ca. 1968.
By Anonymous
25 1/8 x 39 7/8 in./64 x 101.3 cm
Est: $1,000-$1,200

Air India’s icon, a whimsical whiskered Maharaja, rides into the sky atop his bejeweled elephant, along with the rest of his illustriously illustrated entourage.

150. Pvt. Joe Louis says. 1942.
By Anonymous
18 x 24 7/8 in./45.6 x 63.2 cm
Est: $2,000-$2,500

Heavyweight boxing champ and army private Joe Louis makes for the perfect morale-boosting spokesman during World War II. He was the world heavyweight champion from 1937 to 1949 and served in the Army from 1940 to 1942. The remark quoted here was said by Louis at a Navy charity dinner in 1942, which received a standing ovation and enthusiastic media coverage. Louis was not only a symbol of racial unity for Americans (however fraught that notion was), but also defied Hitler’s idea of Aryan superiority when he defeated German heavyweight Max Schmeling. This poster was produced by the U.S. Office of War Information.

170. Barnum & Bailey / La Roche. 1896.
By Anonymous
30 x 39 3/4 in./76.2 x 100.5 cm
Estimate: $1,700-$2,000

This ornate design promotes a curious act in which La Roche climbs into a Fabergé egg style container, rolls himself down a precarious and guard-free spiral runway, and rolls back up again without the aid of sight or a motor. This is the English language version.

207. Sarah Bernhardt. 1901.
By Paul Berthon (1872-1909)
16 x 22 in./40.7 x 55.8 cm
Estimate: $1,700-$2,000

“Berthon produced about 60 [decorative panels] in contrast to his handful of posters… This is his most famous lithograph, a portrait of Sarah Bernhardt in the title role of La Princesse Lointaine (The Faraway Princess) which she first played in 1894. In this design Berthon transformed her costume tiara with its flowery jeweled garland into real irises framing her idealized face” (Gold, p. 120). This is the version before text.

211. Miss Levi’s. 1971.
By Ida van Bladel (1931- )
28 x 40 1/8 in./71 x 102 cm
Estimate: $2,000-$2,500

Provenance: The collection of Ida van Bladel, art director of Young & Rubicam

Years before an underaged Brooke Shields scandalously confessed that nothing came between her and her Calvins, van Bladel showed the world that slipping into a pair of Levi’s was as good as slithering into a very tight second skin—a directly clever, succinct statement. The Antwerp-born designer was the art director at Young & Rubicam International in Brussels, where this remarkable poster was created. And while it was a huge hit in Belgium, the image was not approved for American distribution. This uncut printer’s proof emphasizes Levi’s new wares specifically for women; it’s quite rare!

224. Vence. ca. 1930.
By Roger Broders (1883-1953)
26 1/8 x 40 1/8 in./66.4 x 102 cm
Estimate: $1,700-$2,000

As depicted in this PLM poster, Vence—a few miles inland from Nice and in sight of the sea—offers a peaceful respite with its medieval battlements, health-restoring water, and spiritual refreshment from its verdure. The poster remained in use after the 1936 consolidation of the French railroads into the SNCF, with that insignia replacing the PLM’s.

261. Skating-Concerts. 1877.
By Jules Chéret (1836-1932)
24 1/4 x 30 1/2 in./61.7 x 77.6 cm
Est: $2,000-$2,500

Obviously, the Skating-Concerts venue was the place for young daredevil females to make a name for themselves. Dead center is Miss Korah, lounging upon one of her many wild felines, while daintily placing her tiny hand in a tiger’s open mouth. Also advertised, but not shown, is Miss Mamediah, trainer of the elephants whose tricks—one of which involves a dog—can be seen in the two corner medallions.

365. Mira. 1929.
By Charles Loupot (1892-1962)
8 3/8 x 11 1/2 in./22 x 29 cm
Estimate: $1,700-$2,000

“While it is perhaps not the most visually intelligible advertisement, this poster for Mira razor blades is without a doubt one of Loupot’s most interesting. The product itself is shown in a straightforward, realistic manner, but the object being ‘shaved’ is slightly confusing. It is Loupot’s most cubist rendering of the human form… we know what it is, but we can’t quite explain how we know” (Crouse/Deco, p. 76). This is the smaller format.

406. 1918-1928. 1928.
By Alphonse Mucha (1860-1939)
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 in./14 x 20.8 cm
Est: $1,400-$1,700

This is a small, black-and-white version of the “poster [that] commemorates the tenth anniversary of the founding of Czechoslovakia—one of several countries that arose from the ashes of the Austro-Hungarian Empire broken up after World War I. The nascent country is represented by a young girl, and the garland of freedom is being placed on her by a mythical fairy representing the victorious nations of that war, who created Czechoslovakia by the terms of the peace treaty” (Lendl/Prague, p. 292). The text here reads “From freedom to servitude—servitude to freedom.”

438. Mandeville and King / Superior Flower Seeds. 1897.
By Louis J. Rhead (1858-1926)
18 1/4 x 29 in./46.3 x 73.7 cm
Est: $1,500-$2,000

With a heavy nod to Grasset, this intricate and contemplative design for Mandeville and King flower seeds delicately portrays the romanticization of nature so popular at the time.

490. La Dépêche / Le Tocsin. 1895.
By Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901)
17 3/4 x 22 1/2 in./45 x 57.3 cm
Est: $4,000-$5,000

Arthur Huc, art collector and editor of the Toulouse newspaper La Dépêche, had already used one of Lautrec’s earlier posters successfully in 1892; this time he is advertising a serialization of the novel “The Warning Bell” by Jules de Gastyne in his publication, seen here before the addition of letters. Toulouse-Lautrec strikes the perfect note for the gothic romance, with the pale heroine followed by a dejected dog strolling through the gloom of the night, with the forbiddingly austere walls of a castle behind her. Adriani makes it clear that this blue-ink first-state version before lettering was intended for the poster collecting market (p. 203). Frey says that “the poster he did in December 1895… was somber and nocturnal, reflecting what seemed to be his own mood” (Frey, p. 416). This is the rare version before letters.

Lots 489, 490, 491, and 492 will be sold without reserves, and the consignor has requested that all proceeds be donated to the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

View all lots with low reserves
Live auction begins November 13 at 11am EST
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In-gallery viewing October 21 – November 12 (11am-6pm daily)

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