Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Thrift Wish List & Keane: Big Eyes, Bigger Score

"No Dogs Allowed" 

In an on-going effort to expand my spring wardrobe, I took to the road for a mini-thrift trip of four local secondhand stops. And never in a million years did I expect to  scratch off a long-coveted item from my Thrift Wish List. 

But as I was not-so-patiently waiting behind a man with two carts filled with clothing, and only one cashier, I glanced behind the usually disappointing display case at the checkout. 

And there it was. 

A framed, signed and plated original Keane print. Oh happy day! 

"No Dogs Allowed," though credited to Walter Keane, after a heated court battle was actually revealed to be the work of his wife, Margaret. These big-eyed "waifs" as they came to be known during their 50s-60s popularity, are much sought after but seldom found at the thrift store. 

So cheers to you, nameless Goodwill donor, for releasing this rare find into the thrift universe. And thanks Goodwill, for having this precious print stashed behind the counter for me to buy at a mere $17. 

The signature Big Eyes of Margaret Keane.





















And while it should go without saying that this fortuitous addition to my thrifted collection isn't for sale, I suspect the potential value will only increase in the coming months. 

The runaway kitsch-soaked success of Keane's saucer-eyed children, followed by the courtroom drama over the rightful creator has inspired the Hollywood treatment. Big Eyes, the movie, is now is post-production. And if that isn't enough to pique my interest, it's being directed by longtime Keane fanatic Tim Burton. 

And now that I have one of my very own Big Eyes, I really feel that when I look into those exaggerated orbs that I am officially a part of some rich history in pop culture, in a beloved art frenzy and in the serendipitous nature of the thrift. 

Have you found anything on your Thrift Wish List lately?

This post is linking up with We Call It Junkin'


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13 comments:

Anny said...

Wow you win at thrifting this week! Tim Burton would be perfect for that movie. I hadn't heard of it but will have to keep an "eye" out for it now.

Jackie Jardine said...

Thanks, Anny! I think I'm a thrift winner this week too. And I absolutely cannot wait for that movie. It's interesting for sure.

Dawn WeCallItJunkin said...

This is a wonderful find! I didn't know about these paintings, but I remember my cousin had what was probably a poster of a kitty with huge, very similar eyes in the 70s. I wonder if it was this artist, or made to emulate this artist. Thank you for sharing this at my History & Home Link Party this week, take care - Dawn @ We Call It Junkin.com

Jackie Jardine said...

Thanks. Dawn. Apparently they're pretty collectible. I was so glad to finally get my hands on a Keane. I'll be linking up with you again soon!

Sandy Summage said...

I 've seen these paintings before while out thrifting.I called them the saucer eyed childred.

Anonymous said...

17$ try free i found my on garbade day on the curb i saved his bigs eyes from being apart of a rotting mess at the dump!

SittinWaitinThriftin said...

What an amazing find! I saw the movie recently and it is such an interesting story. So cool that you found this.

Jackie Jardine said...

Thank you! I practically danced out of the Goodwill that day. And what's more, long before the movie... owning a piece of her work was on my Thrift Wish List! Thank the secondhand gods for that karmic find.

<3 Jackie @ Let's Go Thrifting

Angi Moses said...

I have the lit'l girl holding the kitten version of this, framed exactly as yours. My father found it in the city dump and gave it to me in the mid-70's. I would never part with it, due to sentimental reasons, but do wonder of it's value now.

Angi Moses said...

I have the lit'l girl holding the kitten version of this, framed exactly as yours. My father found it in the city dump and gave it to me in the mid-70's. I would never part with it, due to sentimental reasons, but do wonder of it's value now.

Tracey said...

I found the same piece at my thrift store tonight :) I giggled with so much joy to myself for such a great find! Mine was marked at $3.50 and it was half that at because of a color code discount they offered today. I'm please and excited to hang this on our walls

Tracey said...

I found the same piece at my thrift store tonight :) I giggled with so much joy to myself for such a great find! Mine was marked at $3.50 and it was half that at because of a color code discount they offered today. I'm please and excited to hang this on our walls

Jackie Jardine said...

Oh that's awesome , Tracey! Congrats on the find!

Jackie @ Let's Go Thrifting