Interested to know what folks make of this one currently on sale on eBay. My first instinct was that I don't like it and - despite the current bid price suggesting otherwise - I still have concerns about it.
It does come with a Sotheby's tag but there's no way of checking if that's authentic as the auction is from before they began keeping digital records. An original mailing envelope is also included but both that and the letter look "almost" artificially aged.
A few things. First, if it's real, it's friggin' beautiful. It's not a sloppy signature, and the caricature he often did. Second, to me, that envelope really, really adds a lot to authenticity. Because...no secretarily was done that well. So, I'm really liking this. If the envelope and auction things weren't with it, I'd be on the fence.
IMO this is genuine. I believe this letter is to Thelma Pickles who was in John's art class at the Liverpool art college.
At a shade over £3,000 and no expensive buyer's premium to worry about I think the buyer did very well. The personal letter and envelope add a great deal to the value in my mind, though it would have been even better with the booklet John refers to. Not sure why the typed text is so light - I assume the signature must be handwritten.