We’re sorry to report that talented artist Art Wetherell died on Christmas Day 2003, of a perforated stomach ulcer. He had many friends in the UK comic fraternity, and beyond, and will be much missed.
Art’s credits include The Searchers for US publisher Caliber, many strips for Marvel UK, including Transformers, Star Wars for Dark Horse and many adult comics.
Writing for the website of Norway’s Raptus Festival, Arild Wærness reminisced about the artist.
“I remember meeting him for the first time, at Bristol in 2000,” he recalls. “Frode and I had just completed our very first Raptus presentation of the Norwegian comics life. Outside the sweaty hall, we were met by two earnest guys, Dave Windett and Art. They told us their main excuse to visit Bristol that year was to meet up with us (as representatives of the Norwegian comics industry).
“We were very impressed with this show of respect, of course, and during the rest of the weekend we spent considerable time together with the two. I was especially thrilled to meet the artist behind one of my favourite comics series of the mid-Nineties; The Searchers. Frode started running up plans for their visit to Raptus in the autumn, and it was decided that Art would take top billing due to his background in Dark Horse/Star Wars strips. Thus, Art Wetherell shared the poster with Mort Walker at Raptus 2000!
“At Raptus, Art performed in fine form, entertaining and informing the Norwegian public in a quiet, self-effacing way about his work, pencils and inking. Bringing with him his family, he gave as much time as possible to the crowds, making sketches for young kids and old.”
Art began his career drawing for Harrier Comics in the early 1980s, then moving to Marvel UK to pencil strips for weekly titles such as The Real Ghostbusters, Transformers and Thundercats, and also worked on the US format Death’s Head.
He worked for 2000AD in the 1990s and on licensed comics such as Power Rangers, as well as fairytale stories such as “Sleeping Beauty”for the children’s comic Blue Moon.
For Dark Horse he worked on Jabba the Hutt and other Star Wars titles for Dark Horse and Negative Burn and The Searchers for Caliber, the latter written by Colin Clayton bringing together descendants of some of the greatest adventurers in literature from some of the great classics such as Journey to Centre of the Earth, 20,000 League under the Sea, The Invisible Man and The Time Machine.
He was also one of the first artists published by Fantagraphics as part of its Eros Comix line, creating such titles as 2 Hot Girls on a Hot Summer Night, Sizzling Sisters and Treasure Chests).
In 2000, he drew Warrior Nun Brigantia, written by Kevin Gunstone, one of the many spin-off “Warrior Nun” projects based on the Warrior Nun Areala universe created by Ben Dunn for Antarctic Press.
This tribute was updated on 4th June 2019 to add web links. We apologise if you have received this archive item in error in 2019 through social media posts or the site newsletter as a result of this updating