Lot 100 of 271:
Original art from Steinbeck Moon is Down  

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Lot closed - unsold
$3,000 - $5,000

Eight original gouache paintings and three posters - variant trial versions of a theater poster for Oscar Serlin's play based on John Steinbeck's The Moon is Down




c. 1942


Eight paintings with text and illustration on thick posterboard, or mounted from drawing paper. All demonstratively different and by several different artists. Two paintings (the largest 2 in the group) are signed by the artist, Witold Gordon (known for his murals and New Yorker magazine covers). Included are 3 copies of the final poster and one trial board with Peignot style lettering. Sizes of the original artworks vary from approximately 13x9" to 28x20". The printed posters are approximately 22x14".

The Moon is Down was John Steinbeck's second attempt at writing a novel in play form (Of Mice and Men was his first). It was originally written  while on assignment from the Foreign Information Service, a division of the Office of Strategic Services charged with combating Nazi propaganda.  “The Moon is Down” premiered on Broadway in April 1942, starring Otto Kruger as Colonel Lanser and Ralph Morgan as Mayor Orden. , iI was nominated for Best Play by the New York Drama Critics’ Circle and placed second. Provenance: The collection of producer Oscar Serlin.

Lot Amendments

All paintings are protected by acetate sheets (with markings from tape adherence) and all show some signs of light wear and minor soiling; very good. Unique.

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