BOSTON — An uncommon collection of original Walt Disney Studios watercolor paintings featuring Pinocchio will come to auction through RR Auction. Online bidding is open now for the sale, which will conclude Dec. 6.
Pinocchio and Pals
The complete set of 120 watercolors tell the story of Pinocchio, a 1940 film production. The series of
vivid and highly detailed paintings portray the memorable characters of the classic film. Also joining Pinocchio are Jiminy Cricket, Geppetto, Figaro, Cleo, the Blue Fairy, Stromboli, and Lampwick, among others. These original paintings were produced to make stickers to be included in boxes or tins of De Beukelaer cookies. The sweets were produced and sold in Belgium, and were collected by customers and pasted into a storybook album.
These special paintings are the work of Disney artists living in in England at that time. Walt Disney chose each artist personally. All the art was painted to model, using Disney model sheets and instructions coming from the Disney Publicity Department in Burbank, California. Finally, each item of artwork had to approved by the studio, and, finally by Walt Disney himself.
Notable De Beukelaer Storybook Makes Appearance
The collection at auction includes the complete De Beukelaer Pinocchio storybook containing the stickers. Although similar De Beukelaer sticker promotions are in the archives, including Snow White and Dumbo, the location of the original watercolors is unknown. The cards and stickers are quite rare just by themselves, but to find the original paintings is a miracle. Therefore, it is virtually unheard of to have a complete set of original Disney artwork. Furthermore, it is unknown whether the artwork for Snow White and Dumbo even survived World War II. In addition, the artwork is on individual illustration boards, each measuring approximately 5 x 3.5 inches. The set, selling as a single lot, carries an estimate of $75,000+ into the auction.
“In over 50 years of collecting, our animation experts have never seen another single painting, never mind an entire set,” said Bobby Livingston, Executive VP at RR Auction.
“It’s an absolutely outstanding one-of-a-kind collection of incredibly detailed Pinocchio artwork which is of tremendous rarity,” added Livingston.
Bidding on Beauties
In addition to Pinocchio, a number of other Disney darlings appear in this auction.
— Sleeping Beauty and Prince Phillip production concept painting by Eyvind Earle from the Walt Disney Studios, 1958 film. This particular painting came to be the model for the cover design of the Sleeping Beauty ‘Big Golden Book.’ ($12,000+)
• It’s a Small World original concept painting by Mary Blair for the facade of the ‘It’s a Small World’ exhibit. ($14,000+)
— Briar Rose production cel and partial production background from Sleeping Beauty. ($10,000+)
• Cinderella’s Coach production concept painting by Mary Blair from Cinderella. ($12,000+)
— Maleficent and Goons production cels and pan production background from Sleeping Beauty ($9,000+)
Witches, Mouses, and More
• Wicked Witch production cel from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. ($9,000+)
— Jenny and Joe production concept painting by Mary Blair from Melody Time ($7,000+)
Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather production concept painting by Eyvind Earle from Sleeping Beauty ($6,000+)
• Mickey Mouse production concept painting from Fantasia ($6,000+)
— Snow White production concept drawing from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs ($4,000+)
For more information, visit www.rrauction.com.
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