Okito/Johnstone Nest of boxes
I saw George perform this on the tribute to Jack Gwynne show at the 1995 Abbott’s Get Together.
He mentioned from the stage that Okito had worked with him on decorating the props. Well to a collector that little fact did not go unnoticed with me and I could not wait to talk to George after the show. I was going to get my hands on that prop! I went to the dealer’s room where George had been hanging out with Terry Seabrook at Terry’s booth. I waited trying not to be obvious until George came.
I asked him about the nest of boxes and he told me he used to pick Okito up and bring him to his house when he lived in Chicago. They had a great friendship. Okito liked to putter around George’s basement shop and decided to help with George’s current project of the nest of boxes. George wanted to paint the boxes entirely but Okito insisted they apply his stickers to vastly improve the box’s appearance. Okito insisted he (Okito) apply the stickers and then he helped George with the final design (for many of you that do not know, George was a fine artist in his own right!). So, that was the story. The boxes represented the combined efforts of Okito and George. Now for the big question: “George will you sell them “I said nervously. He thought for a moment and nodded. Beatty and I used them all the time in my club work but they just got too heavy to lug around”. We agree on a price and I lugged them out of the trunk of Georges car and placed them into mine. Now is your chance to won them with a signed statement form George Johnstone as to their authenticity. These are not gimmicked in any way. Gorge either loaded them off stage or (as at Abbott’s) removed a loaf of bread from the last one where he found the spectators watch). You are buying a piece of magic’s history from two very admired magicians.
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