THE JOHN DARCY NOBLE COLLECTION
"AMONGST HIS OWN"
A PERSONAL TRIBUTE TO JOHN DARCY NOBLE
Sadly, a true friend to us all passed away on September 19, 2003 and with that passing, the brilliant fire that fueled a more than forty-year career of authoring books and articles pertaining to dolls, collecting, life, art and beauty in all of its forms, was extinguished forever.
The fire is gone, but its comforting warmth will remain indefinitely, to help make our world more palatable. That warmth embodies a rich legacy of smiles, laughter, taste, knowledge, sharing, witticisms and vivid memories...captured forever in print.
Born the son of a blacksmith in Brockley, on the outskirts of London, England, in the early nineteen-twenties, John was a highly intelligent and extremely artistic child. That aspect of his personality set him apart from other children and his was perhaps, not the happiest of childhoods. His fascination with toys, “playthings” as he called them, developed early, possibly out of isolation, and he related that he once swapped a brand new toy for a Victorian porcelain whistle. John spent all of his extra shillings on old playthings, which he picked up for “next to nothing” and he practiced the fine art of “upgrading” his collections at an early age as well. He was blessed with a discerning eye from birth it seemed!
As an artist, John had developed a personal style by an early age.
It was exhibited through his painting drawing and later, his jewelry design.
We understand he created marvelous jewelry out of ordinary
household items like thumbtacks, for example!
sometimes referred to himself as “a professional Englishman”.
When we hear those words, visions come to mind of a young man, sitting at a table model radio, listening to BBC broadcasts for hours on end. He admitted that he listened to the radio to refine his accent and speech patterns and we, years later, were the benefactors of those hours because John’s voice in life and print embodied a rich tone of posh elegance, infused with wonder, infused with romance, infused with flirtatious glee.
That charm and elegance became him.
An American tourist visiting London, namely Robert Clement, ventured into John's life and the two bonded instantly. It seems they met at a bus stop during a rainstorm. Years later, John would describe the rain falling from the sky as "torrential"...while Bobby would term it "a drizzle".
A metaphor of their very different, yet inseparable personalities, we say.
we were able to choose just one word to describe
our friend John Darcy Noble, the word must be...artist.
John was an artist in every sense that we can fathom. His weaving of words, nothing short of brilliance, must be deemed...art. His talents with a pen and brush...once again...art. His voice, his laugh, his cheery greeting of "hello my darlings" and even the way he sipped his tea...art.
The spell that he cast over those around him however...magic...created by an extremely artistic magician.