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    Two Original Ink Drawings Signed by
    Garth Williams

    Garth Williams (American 1912-1996). Two preliminary drawings for illustrations in The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden, 1960: an unused drawing (labeled "22" by Williams) featuring Papa Bellini listening to Chester's musical chirping, eventually replaced by another drawing for what became illustration #20; and an alternate version of illustration #24 featuring Chester Cricket and Tucker Mouse in the drainpipe. Both drawings in ink on stiff paper, both measuring 12.875 x 8.625 inches. A couple of shallow bends outside the image area, and a few minor instances of surface loss to top margin of the latter drawing. The drawing of Papa Bellini has Williams' note in red ink:"Text may be run under this pix. GW." Both are signed in full by Garth Williams. Both are generally near fine.
    Cricket's author George Selden, was apparently unhappy with Williams' illustration "22" and requested a change. Editor Hal Vursell diplomatically asked Garth Williams if he might consider the author's suggestion of a different approach to the same scene, this time by putting Chester square in the foreground and making the cricket and his music the focal point. Williams obliged. Afterall, as Vursell wrote Williams, " this would emphasize the cricket as musician which, I suppose, is the real point of the book."

    More Information:

    "As for drawing #22: The author, who is a great music buff, feels that we haven't really got any big musical scene in the illustrations. He wishes that drawing #22 [later to become illustration #20] could be done with the cricket well up in the foreground, performing his music, and the interested crowd back away from him in perspective. He thinks this would emphasize the cricket as musician which, I suppose, is the real point of the book. We are talking about a perspective shot, as if the camera were close behind the cricket and the audience were further away and reduced by distance. In other words, a big closeup of the cricket and the others seen in the distance past him as he performs. I know this sounds hard and you might not like it, but I will confess I wish you would try it." (From a letter to Garth Williams from editor Hal Vursell, dated August 4, 1960.)

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    Auction Dates
    April, 2015
    8th-9th Wednesday-Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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