Designer Desire: John Burningham

Mosaic of John Burningham illustrations | H is for Home

Lyon & Turnbull is holding an auction next week (28th Feb 2018) which includes some fabulous original artworks from John Burningham’s own personal collection. I thought it would be a good opportunity to feature a few of them as part of our weekly Designer Desire series.

If we had the spare cash, I’d love to own one or two of the ones that are up for sale from John Burningham’s ABC, a lovely children’s book first published by Jonathan Cape in 1964 – estimates for these range from £1,000 – £2,000.

His most famous illustrations for a children’s book is surely Ian Fleming’s (he of 007 fame) Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. Other books of his own include Borka: the Adventures of a Goose with no Feathers (1963), Trubloff: The Mouse Who Wanted to Play the Balalaika (1964), Cannonball Simp (1966), Harquin: The Fox Who Went Down to the Valley (1968) and Mr Gumpy’s Outing (1970).

Although best known for his books, he also produced poster designs for London Transport and British Transport and magazine covers for periodicals such as Punch.

Just this month, Burningham and his wife Helen Oxenbury received BookTrust’s first ever joint lifetime achievement award.

Portrait of John Burningham | Maria Spann ©credit