'Making a Mark' auction of Quentin's artworks for the Quentin Blake Centre for Illustration

Wednesday 20th September 2023

Once again, London auctioneers Bonhams are hosting a sale of original illustrations by Quentin Blake,  with all proceeds going towards the Quentin Blake Centre for Illustration.

The auction features 78 artworks in Quentin's distinctive style, many of which were created specially for this sale, featuring some of the artist's favourite subjects: birds, fantastic creatures, and imaginary people and situations.  Though none of the works are illustration commissions, they demonstrate a strong sense of story and challenge the viewer to provide their own narrative.  Colours are by turns vibrant and evocative, providing a wonderful insight into Quentin's current artistic practice.

Guide prices for the Lots range from £500-£3,000, with bidding expected to be competitive for the chance not only to own a unique original artwork by one of Britain's best-loved illustrators, but also to help support the arts charity to which he has given his name.

The Quentin Blake Centre is raising funds to restore a fascinating but forgotten 18th- and 19th-century heritage site to create the permanent national centre for illustration.  In New River Head’s magnificent engine house, windmill base and derelict stores - to be repurposed as galleries, learning spaces, a café and a shop, set within half an acre of new public gardens - the Quentin Blake Centre will offer a dynamic, distinctive programme of exhibitions, and will provide the eventual home for Quentin's extensive archive of original artwork. It will be created with and for its local community in Clerkenwell, while strengthening the foundations for its nationwide tours and schools projects.  The Centre is set to open in 2025, and half of the £13m needed has already been raised.  It is hoped that this auction will provide a much-needed boost for the final phase of funding.

Bidding on Quentin's artworks is open from 12:00 BST on Friday 22 September until Friday 6 October in the Making a Mark auction on Bonhams website.