A recently discovered sketch of Winnie-the-Pooh and Piglet, signed by E. H. Shepard, the original illustrator of the beloved series, could fetch as much as $36,000. The pen-and-ink image depicts Pooh and Piglet walking home after bidding farewell to their friends in the Hundred Acre Wood. It was the final scene before the characters turned back into toys.
The drawing is identical to the illustration in the Winnie-the-Pooh book published in 1926. However, this one is dated 1958. Besides the original one — which sold for $220,000 in 2022 — no other Shepard drawings of this image have been found. Experts believe it may be the first and last time the artist re-drew this iconic picture.
The newly found drawing belonged to Christopher Foyle. His wife, Cathy, stumbled upon it while cleaning a cellar drawer after his demise in 2022. Christopher acquired the framed picture from his grandfather, William Foyle, the founder of Foyles Bookshop. The UK-based chain frequently hosted literary lunches for famous authors and illustrators. It is believed that Shepard sketched the image at one of the lunches as a keepsake for the Foyle family.
Dominic Winter Auctioneers plans to sell the iconic image and other items from Christopher's library in January 2024. They include numerous historical books, manuscripts, and pictures, some dating back to the 13th century.
Resources: dominicwinter.uk Yahoonews.com, Smithsonian.com