Anyone who watched the iconic TV comedy sketch show between 1969 to 1974 will remember the enlarged foot crashing down with a splat at the end of sketches in Monty Python's Flying Circus.
Boldon Auction Galleries are auctioning one of the ceramic feet and a book signed by Terry Gilliam, 'Animations of Mortality' by Terry Gilliam on Wednesday 16th August. The ceramic foot was made by a model maker who worked for the Pythons, one of a number of feet commissioned to be given as presents to people they liked. Notably one went to Gary Lineker because he was a favourite of Eric Idle's. The model maker had to give it a bruised toe!
The foot is based on a segment taken from the painting 'An Allegory with Venus and Cupid' by Italian painter Agnolo Bronzino (1503-1572) which hangs in the National Gallery, London. Terry Gilliam saw this painting and was inspired to 'borrow' Cupid's foot and immortalise it on TV.
Provenance: This ceramic foot was given to the seller by a member of his family who was the model maker who worked for the Python's and is still friends with the surviving members. The book is signed by Terry Gilliam. For auction 16th August, 10am.