New Column Focuses on Churchill Collectables
By BRIAN KRAPF
This chalkware statue of WSC is six inches tall. An incised mark on the back of the base verifies that this piece was made in 1941 by Verdan Lolayne.
Lolayne was a Hollywood, California commercial artist, who, in the late 1930’s through the early 1940’s, produced small statues to sell in gift shops and other tourist venues. Most of his work includes likenesses of Hollywood movie stars that tourists could take home as souvenirs. Other more kitschy works included a series of semi-nude Hawaiian hula dancers and sea nymphs. Despite the subject matter, these Lolayne statues are quite rare and highly prized by collectors today.
The WSC statue is an obvious departure from Lolayne’s typical subject matter and has the distinction of being the only WSC statue made in America during the war years. Indeed, Lolayne produced no other statues of war-era politicians or military leaders, so WSC stands alone amidst the Hollywood personalities, hula girls and sea nymphs—a stark and interesting departure from the normal production. Why Lolayne chose WSC as a subject is anyone’s guess, but we are glad he did. The likeness is excellent. The piece is well made and ranks as one of the most desired by Lolayne collectors.
Brian Krapf formerly served as President of the American Political Items Collectors, which is devoted to the preservation and study of America’s political heritage. He has been honored with APIC’s highest award: induction into the organization’s Hall of Fame. Items from the Krapf collection have been featured in History Channel documentaries and also in major print media publications. He has also served as a national advisor to eBay in the areas of security and fraud detection, and he designed eBay’s current political memorabilia listing categories.