The Tony Hart collection22 January 2021 Copies of original 1950s designs for the Blue Peter ship emblem and earlier related works by TV presenter Tony Hart are among the items heading to auction this month.
The items come from the collection of Hart’s close friend and agent Roc Renals (1922-2014). The 55-lot sale is expected to raise close to £20,000.
Hart (1925-2009) was a legend of British children's television, appearing on Blue Peter then fronting shows such as Vision On (1964-76), Take Hart (1977-83), and Hartbeat (1984-93) where he inspired and educated children to create their own art. He received two BAFTA awards: one for Best Children's Educational Programme in 1984 for Take Hart, and he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998.
Lot 1042 contains a collection of printed and photocopied items, including photocopies of Hart’s original designs for the Blue Peter ship emblem, even showing how he had taken the eventual scale of the Blue Peter badge into account when it came to designing details.
Hart’s earliest TV artwork, created on commission for a 1952 BBC programme called Saturday Special, shares some common traits with the famous Blue Peter ship that followed some years later.
Depicting a galleon in full sail, with streaming pennants – just as the Blue Peter vessel would when he designed it – the artist used the design as part of a story titled Hooray for Humpty-Dumpty, featuring egg-like characters as pirates.
This galleon and eggs by Tony Hart is estimated at £700-£1000.
This ship off egg island by Tony Hart is also estimated at £700-£1000.
Other items in the sale at Ewbank’s in Surrey on January 29 include:
A landscape used on the Take Hart TV show, estimate £60-£100.
This Gallery sign is typical of those Hart would create at speed during his show before a selection of artwork sent in by children was displayed. Both Vision On and Take Hart displayed children's pictures in this way.
At its peak Vision On received 10,000 pieces of art from children every week, which rather explains why co-presenter Pat Keysell used to say: "Thank you for sending us your pictures. Sorry that we can't return any to you, but we give a prize for all those we show." It ended up becoming something of a catchphrase.
Estimated at £150-£250 this landscape of Genova coastline by Tony Hart is an unsigned watercolour and ink on paper.
View of Air Studios Montserrat is estimated at £300-£500. It is a watercolour and ink on paper, c1979, signed and titled. It was painted when Tony Hart visited the Beatles producer and 'Fifth Beatle' George Martin at his newly constructed Air Studios in Montserrat.
Flight through the ages, from Wright Flyer to Spaceship by Tony Hart is estimated at £300-£500.
You can browse all the lots in The Tony Hart Collection and place your bids online on thesaleroom.com.