Two lots of artwork from the private collection of critically acclaimed former comic artist and illustrator Jack Kent each could sell for over $10,000 in Heritage Auctions’ Great American Comic Strip Online Auction Featuring the Jack Kent Collection, which ends 26th February 2020 on HA.com.
The 206-lot auction features a trove of artwork drawn by others that he had acquired.
The top two lots owned by Kent were a Hal Foster Prince Valiant #310 Sunday Comic Strip Original Art dated 17th January 1943 (King Features Syndicate, 1943), which carries a pre-auction estimate of $20,000 plus, and Floyd Gottfredson and Ted Thwaites Mickey Mouse Daily Comic Strip Original Art dated 31st December 1935 (Disney Enterprises & King Features Syndicate, 1935), for which the pre-auction estimate is $10,000 plus.
Other top lots from Kent’s personal collection, each with an estimate of $500+, include but are not limited to: Jack Kent’s MAD Cover Preliminary Original Art, a group of four (EC, circa 1970s); Al Hirschfeld‘s The New York Times Drama Section Original Art (NYT Co., 1940); Chester Gould‘s The Girl Friends Daily Comic Strip Original Art (Chicago Daily News, Inc., 1931); E.C. Segar‘s Thimble Theatre Daily Comic Strip Original Art dated 2nd July 1935 (King Features Syndicate, 1935); and Harold Knerr‘s The Katzenjammer Kids and Dinglehoofer und His Dog Companion Sunday Comic Strips Original Art – a group of two, dated 18th September 1938 (King Features Syndicate, 1938).
The auction also features Flash Gordon strips by Dan Barry; L’il Abner strips by Al Capp; Garfield strip by Jim Davis; Pogo strips by Walt Kelly; Secret Agent X-9 by Bob Lubbers (as Bob Lewis); and Terry and the Pirates strips by George Wundar.
Jack Kent (1920-85) was an American cartoonist and author-illustrator of more than 40 children’s books, known best by many for creating the King Aroo comic strip. In addition to his own books, Kent illustrated 22 works by other authors.
King Aroo was syndicated and distributed internationally from 1950-65. The strip was not a huge commercial success, but was revered by its loyal base of fans, in part because of its use of puns and imaginative dialog. Kent also wrote and drew the seasonal 1968 syndicated Christmas comic strip Why Christmas Almost Wasn’t.
He also wrote several articles (one of which he also illustrated) for MAD magazine in the late 1960s, and made a final contribution to MAD in 1977.
“What is extraordinary about the Jack Kent Collection offered here is that he not only was a highly acclaimed artist, but he also was an unabashed fan of other artists ,” Heritage Auctions Senior Vice President Ed Jaster said.
“His love of comic strips goes back to the early 1930s, when he began assembling his collection by writing fan letters to the artists of other strips. It is a great honour to see this slice of comic strip entrusted to Heritage Auctions by Jack Kent’s family.”
King Aroo strips are rare in the market, but are popular with collectors.
Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. Heritage maintains offices in New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, London, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.
The Internet’s most popular auction-house website, HA.com, has over 1,250,000 registered bidder-members and searchable free archives of five million past auction records with prices realised, descriptions and enlargeable photos.
• View Heritage Auctions’ Great American Comic Strip Online Auction Featuring the Jack Kent Collection – bidding ends 26th February 2020