Original Artwork of Norman Rockwell

As an illustrator, Norman Rockwell almost never created works as objects of fine art. His drawings and paintings were created for one of the many magazines or advertising accounts he illustrated for, and as such, had little or no value at the time. In his early career, works were often just given away. Ad agencies may or may not have kept the work. An art director at an agency may have laid claim to the work or passed it on to someone in his staff. No one then could have imagined the demand for his artwork nor foreseen the price it would command today.

Collectors now pay well over $800,000 for the privilege of owning an original oil painting. A post World War II finished oil painting used as a Saturday Evening Post cover could easily be worth $1 million or more. Oil studies have sold for over $100,000 and charcoal and pencil drawings for near $100,000.

When commissioned to do an illustration, or in preparation for a Post cover, Rockwell began by staging props and then drawing them. Later in his career he simply photographed the setting and worked from the photos. Generally he would render the concept first as a pencil and charcoal drawing, then do an oil study (or two) and then the final oil paining. In his travels, Rockwell would draw and paint simply for his own enjoyment. And occasionally, he was know to have taken classes for stimulation and to be with other artists.

All of these various types of works appear on the market today. Good finished oil paintings that were covers for the Post are rare but they do appear and as stated above can be quit pricey. Works that are of the patented Rockwellian humor are the most highly sought after, with the best being in the high six figures. Good oil paintings are available in the mid-range of $250k to $450k. Lesser known but good oils can be in the $80 - $150k range (or occasionally less). Drawings and oil studies can start at around $20,000. (Limited edition prints start at $2,000 and go up from there. For a list of prints, please see our Rockwell limited edition print list).

Unlike the print market where information abounds, dealers and collectors are often guarded about their information on originals and are not willing to post the availability of these works for wide spread public knowledge. If you are interested in owning a Rockwell original, give consideration to what price range you might be able to buy into and the general time period and style, and we can help you find the right work. With a little patience, you can find a work that will bring you a great deal of enjoyment. Please call 505-470-7200 (or e-mail at sales@lewisbond.com and we will help you with your search.

 [ Home | Classifieds | Rockwell Page]