Thursday, 4 August 2011

Tales from ebay: Leslie Moffat Ward

Readers will know I don't generally hand out tips on ebay items up for sale and this post is no exception. But it is a cautionary tale of just how badly things can go wrong if you don't pay almost constant attention to our favourite website. There is no point being occasional about ebay; you must be unremitting. And this is why. The colour print you see above is by the British artist Leslie Moffat Ward (1888 - 1978). Perhaps not exciting but an artist I've liked for a long time without ever finding anything decent by him ie one of his better landscape etchings from the 1920s. This rare woodcut is from the same period, I would say, and looks very much like a steal from SG Boxsius' Autumn. Some few weeks back it came up on ebay with the far-fetched starting price of £90. Having failed to sell, it came back a week or two later, now starting at a more reasonable £75. Even so, no one was biting. So, finally the vendor put it in at £50. And what happened? Two charlies slogged it out, bid after bid, and took the price to £156! I mean I like Ward but I don't want to make a fool of myself. You couldn't make it up.


  1. A steal maybe but I like it very much. I envy and try to copy your self control(or regulation?) very much. Ebay is a museum, house of sugar and a carousel. Only the self disciplined will survive such a Shangri-la.

  2. Ward is unpretentious. I like the every day things - pigs, wire fence, old sheds. I think it was somewhere he knew. It could also be lino.

    By the 1920s Ward had developped a nice line and nice sense of scale.


  3. a cautionary tale!

    and this piece is lovely, charles. and the artist is new to me, so many thanks.

  4. Cautionary in more ways than one, Lily. Lovely, yes, but £156 at auction is laughable - and wrong!