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John Huddy of Art of the Book has had a life-long interest and appreciation of fine art. His father was a keen collector of pictures and studio ceramics, when collecting in this field was in its infancy. His mother was an life-long editor and publisher as well as a published author of over 40 titles. John was fortunate to study History of Art at school and subsequently went on to gain his MA (Hons) in History of Art from the University of St Andrew's, focusing on Italian Renaissance painting and writing his Master's dissertation on the early 20th century Cornish-based painter Christopher Wood


He then worked at Christie’s, St James’s, London, gaining first-hand experience of the international art market in the Old Master Paintings, Valuations, and Heritage and Taxation departments. He assisted with a large-scale valuation for a major private English collection as well as undertaking research and assisting in writing entries on Private Sales for the annual Christie’s Review of the Year (1995). He then went on to specialise independently in European Old Master Drawings, acquiring pieces for collectors and exhibiting his collection at a number of key British art fairs. 


During this time he began working with book illustrators and film animators worldwide; Illustrationcupboard Gallery was launched. Over 25 years John built this into a unique, ground-breaking enterprise, holding events and exhibitions the world-over, along with an extensive signed and first edition bookshop. Representing, promoting and exhibiting the original artwork, by leading British-published illustrators, was then a sector largely overlooked, but is now part of the canon in mainstream art collecting.


His much-loved three-floor art gallery in the world-famous art district of St James’s in Mayfair established the collecting market for contemporary illustration art worldwide – a most valuable, fascinating and expanding area of the international art arena. John now brings his decades of entrepreneurial experience to Art of the Book, to continue highlight the talents of established and up-coming illustrators

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