Don’t miss out on some marvellous classic X-Men art by Rafael López Espí

There are only a couple of British comic-related items in this week’s this week’s Catawiki International Original Comic Art auction, but if you’re a Robot Archie or Modesty Blaise fan, you’ll want to check them out. Plus, a smashing recreation of a Spanish Marvel X-Men cover, typical of Spanish artist Rafael López Espí in the 1970s is worth a look.

The auction closes at 7.00pm, so you’d better be quick!

First up, we have an original Robot Archie” page illustrated by Ted Kearon from the Lion comic story “The Superons”, first published in 1968….

Lion - Robot Archie "The Superons" (1968) - art by Ted Kearon
Lion – Robot Archie “The Superons” (1968) – art by Ted Kearon

The original Modesty Blaise comic strip offered this week is by Romero from 1971, Number 2367, a pen and ink on cardboard, with the printed strip cut out of the newspaper and placed on the back.

Modesty Blaise 2367 - art by Romero
Modesty Blaise 2367 – art by Romero

Finally, we have a lovely recreation of a classic X-Men cover created for a Spanish publisher, by Rafael López Espí, work by the artist created just last year. If the name sounds familiar to Marvel UK fans it should because, as we noted in 2015, back back in the 1970s, the London-based publisher offered a number of posters he drew to loyal readers in its many superhero comics.

Classic X-Men cover recreation by Rafael López Espí (2020)
Classic X-Men cover recreation by Rafael López Espí (2020)
(Yes, yes, we know Sauron wasn’t red and he never encountered the X-Men in these costumes… artist Brian Williamson has told us)

Born in Barcelona in 1937, Rafael López Espí is perhaps best known for his superhero work for publisher Ediciones Vértice in the 1960s and 70s, but his comics career, which began in 1953, has included covers for DC Thomson’s Commando and the Fleetway titles Air Ace, Battle, Roxy, Marilyn and Valentine.

His strip work includes western stories such as “Rex Raven”, “Billy McGregor” and “Riffle”, as well as several war and romance stories, and “Mytek the Mighty”.

In recent years, he’s recreated the posters offered to Marvel UK readers in the 1970s, which will surely prompt plenty of memories who may have bought them back then.

  • Marvel UK Poster Ad
  • Spider-Man by López Espí
  • Captain America by López Espí
  • The Incredible Hulk by López Espí
  • Iron Man by López Espí

Although his web site indicates he eventually tired of comics work because of issues over creator rights, he returned to the medium in 2009 to create Extra-Humans and Rayser, published by Panini, the latter inspiring a musical soundtrack by Zíclope and Scud Hero.

His Facebook page features a lot of his art for Ediciones Vértice and more of his Marvel hero-inspired imagery.

• View all lots in this week’s Catawiki International Original Comic Art auction here

• Modesty Blaise strip collections on AmazonUK (Affiliate Link)

• You can find more info on the posters and the artist Rafael López Espí here (in Spanish)

• Rafael López Espí on Facebook

• Rafael López Espí: Lambiek entry

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.



Categories: Art and Illustration, Auctions, British Comics, British Comics - Newspaper Strips, Comic Art, Comics, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Events, Other Worlds

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