Modesty Blaise: Uncle Happy SNIP

Heritage Auctions offers Star Trek, Modesty Blaise art in upcoming aution

Greg Hildebrandt's Star Trek: Year Five cover
Greg Hildebrandt’s Star Trek: Year Five cover

Modesty Blaise art by John M. Burns and Greg Hildebrandt’s stunning original cover art for this month’s debut issue of Star Trek: Year Five #1 comic book series are among the highlights of dozens of SF, adventure and horror masterpiece paintings in Heritage Auctions’ Illustration Art Auction on 23rd April 2019 in Dallas and on HA.com.

The new Star Trek: Year Five series, released by IDW Publishing, will feature a succession of creators to pen the first arc, which will “explore a hidden chapter of Enterprise history.” IDW is launching the series with a bang by involving Hildebrandt, the legendary artist who lends his talent to the first Star Trek project in his career, which has spanned more than 60 years.

The 38-by-28-inch painting cover art may sell for $10,000 to $15,000.

Another piece of Star Trek history is Steven Chorney’s 1991 poster study for Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (est. $1,000-$2,000) and Richard “Sparky” Moore‘s Star Trek: Mission to Horatius book cover – which graced the first ever Star Trek novel -and interior illustrations (est. $800-$1,200).

Steven Chorney - Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, poster study, 1991
Steven Chorney – Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, poster study, 1991
Star Trek: Mission to Horatius book cover by Richard "Sparky" Moore
Star Trek: Mission to Horatius book cover by Richard “Sparky” Moore

Also on offer in the auction is the cover art for the Titan Books Modesty Blaise collection, Uncle Happy, by John M. Burns, published in 1990, and three spot illustrations by a personal favourite, Virgil Finlay, including the bizarre “Hepcats of Venus“, art for Fantastic Stories of the Imagination interior illustration (January 1962). There are also a number of stunning artworks by John Conrad Berkey in this auction, including a cover and interior art, “Invisible Airplane“, created for Discover magazine.

Modesty Blaise: Uncle Happy paperback cover, 1990, by John M. Burns
Modesty Blaise: Uncle Happy paperback cover, 1990, by John M. Burns
Hepcats of Venus, Fantastic Stories of the Imagination interior illustration, January 1962
Hepcats of Venus, Fantastic Stories of the Imagination interior illustration, January 1962
The Invisible Airplane, an illustration for Discover Magazine by John Conrad Berkey
The Invisible Airplane, an illustration for Discover Magazine by John Conrad Berkey

Fans of “Little Nemo” creator Winsor McKay will also be keeping an eye on “When Fords Begin to Fly” an artwork he created around 1925.

Winsor McCay - When Fords Begin to Fly, circa 1925
Winsor McCay – When Fords Begin to Fly, circa 1925

Additional original SF paintings and artworks include the 1954 original cover art for Orbit Science Fiction #5 by Ed Valigursky (est. $3,000-$5,000). Orbit Science Fiction was a science fiction magazine only published in 1953 and 1954 by the Hanro Corporation and only five issues were published.

Ed Valigursky - Orbit Science Fiction no. 5 cover, November/ December 1954
Ed Valigursky – Orbit Science Fiction no. 5 cover, November/ December 1954

Plus, look out for legendary artist Edmund (Emsh) Emshwiller’s surreal Mind Mate, Amazing Stories digest cover, July 1964 (est. $2,000-$3,000); and The Spirit of Science-Fiction, 1953, the original cover art for Science Fiction Plus magazine, by Frank R. Paul and Dorothy Les Tina (est. $700-$900)

Among a group of classic horror original paintings in the auction is the painting Dark Moon, 1953, Hannes Bok’s stunning original cover art for Fantasy Digest (the second issue renamed Fantasy Magazine). The 1950s series sported four beautiful covers by Bok, and this painting of a woman with eerily glowing eyes is one of his most striking artworks (est. $10,000-$15,000)

Hannes Bok - Dark of the Moon, Fantasy Magazine cover, 1953
Hannes Bok – Dark of the Moon, Fantasy Magazine cover, 1953

Also offered is an original, 1946 cartoon illustration of Morticia Addams of The Adams Family by creator Charles Addams (est. $3,000-$5,000); the 1971 Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos  book cover by Victor Valla (est. $1,500-$2,500); and, formerly from the Ray Bradbury Collection, Something Wicked This Way Comes – The Dust Witch, created in 1988 by Joseph Anthony Mugnaini (est. $3,000-$5,000).

Morticia Addams, original cartoon illustration by Charles Addams, January 1946
Morticia Addams, original cartoon illustration by Charles Addams, January 1946

Original Fantasy art includes the original art from the Magic the Gathering card titled Silkenfist Orde, by Greg Hildebrandt (created in 1999, est. $1,500-$2,500); Boris Vallejo original cover art for Conan The Fearless paperback cover (1986, est. $6,000-$8,000); and artist Walter Martin Baumhofer’s Red Snow, Doc Savage magazine cover (published February 1935, est: $12,000-18,000). The painting shows a dramatic scene with several men floundering in the water as a lifeboat takes on water, a measure of chaos that is punctuated by the presence of a handgun.

The image appeared on the cover of Doc Savage magazine, named after the fictional character who first appeared in American pulp magazines during the 1930s and 1940s.

Also on offer is James Allen St. John’s Tarzan and the Golden Lion book frontispiece (1922, estimate: $40,000-60,000) presenting a harsh view of the risks involved with challenging the balance of nature. An interior illustration, the appeared in Tarzan and the Golden Lion by Edgar Rice Burrows (A.C. McClurg, 1922).

Another popular pulp cover is Hugh Joseph Ward’s The Man Who Carried Death, a Spicy Detective Stories magazine cover (August 1940, estimate: $30,000-50,000). The Spicy Detective series is one of several in the weird menace for which Ward is known.

• Visit Heritage Auctions’ Sunday Internet Comics, Animation & Art Auction #121852 to browse high-resolution images of the auction’s 598 lots of comic books, original comic book art and memorabilia. Bidding opens at 6 p.m. (Central Time) on HA.com

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John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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