The original cover art from Marvel Comics The Amazing Spider-Man #100 – considered one of the most iconic covers of the 1970s and an auction item we highlighted ourselves recently – could sell for as much as $300,000 in Heritage Auctions’ winter Comics & Comic Art event (22nd – 24th February 2018).
This event has a number of Marvel UK related items going under the hammer, which we featured here, including a number of the artworks are by Dave Hunt, who died last year. But it’s also brimming with fresh-to-market high-grade vintage books, the auction features rarely seen art, such as Frank Frazetta’s Tree of Life Original Painting (est. $300,000).
“Hot on the heels of a last year’s record sales, we are starting 2018 with milestones of comic history,” said Barry Sandoval, Director of Operations for Comics & Comic Art at Heritage. “There are wonders to be found for every collector across every price point.”
Artists John Romita Sr.’s and Frank Giacoia’s cover art for The Amazing Spider-Man #100 masterfully portrays Spidey and dozens of famous canon characters and marks the first time the artwork has ever been offered at auction. Collaborating with the legendary Stan Lee, the two understood the anniversary issue’s cover needed to be a masterpiece. Historians and fans alike rank the cover among the most influential of all time.
“This cover was done during the peak period of John Romita, Sr.’s artwork, at a time when Spider-Man’s popularity was extremely high,” Heritage Auctions’ Senior Vice President for Fine & Decorative Arts Ed Jaster said.
“John Romita, Sr., had done the covers and interior of Spider-Man #39-95, and he changed the character from a kind of nerdy high school kid to a more self-confident college student, which is part of the reason why Spider-Man was able to capture more of an older market.”
Another striking example of Marvel Comics’ bombastic Silver Age covers is the original cover art to Thor #15 by Jack “King” Kirby and Vince “The Prince” Colletta (est. $80,000). Thor almost jumps right off the page amid a highly detailed and character-stuffed background.
Original daily newspaper comic strip art includes two important rarities: a scarce original Calvin and Hobbes daily comic strip by artist Bill Watterson (est. $70,000).
In addition to Watterson’s, fans of Charles Schulz are offered the original Art for the 21st December 1958 Peanuts Sunday Comic Strip featuring a coveted holiday theme and an entire cast of characters (est. $70,000).
Even more beloved themes from Peanuts are offered, particularly Snoopy on his doghouse or pretending he’s a World War One Flying Ace, Charlie Brown and Lucy on the pitcher’s mound and Lucy as the sarcastic psychiatrist, talking Charlie Brown through an existential crisis.
The sale’s selection of high-grade vintage comic books includes copies of Batman #1 (DC, 1940), CGC FN/VF 7.0 (est. $250,000) and a scarce copy of All-American Comics #16 (DC, 1940), CGC FN+ 6.5, featuring the origin and first appearance of Green Lantern (est. $125,000). The price guide value of the first appearance of Wonder Woman, in All Star Comics #8 (DC, 1942), CGC FN+ 6.5 (est. $100,000), has skyrocketed by 49 percent between 2016 and 2017.
Collector favourites include Captain America Comics #1 (Timely, 1941), CGC VG- 3.5 (est. $85,000), for its dynamic Adolf Hitler cover by Kirby, and the first appearance of Spider-Man in Amazing Fantasy #15 (Marvel, 1962), CGC FN 6.0 (est. $50,000).
A private collector’s complete run of every Archie-related comic or character reference ever published between 1941 and 1971 debuts in this auction with a group of 30 lots, starting with his first appearance in Pep Comics #22 (MLJ, 1941), CBCS Restored FN+ 6.5 (est. $50,000).
Perhaps rarest of all is an unusual promotional issue published as a shoe store giveaway (Archie, 1948), CGC VF/NM 9.0 (est. $3,000), rarely seen at auction.
Additional highlights include, but are not limited to Square Eggs (a.k.a. Lost In The Andes), 1973, a classic painting depicting Walt Disney’s Donald Duck family by Carl Barks (est. $50,000); original art by Jack Kirby and Paul Reinman for Page 20 from Marvel Comics’ X-Men #1 (est. $40,000); Robert Crumb’s original art for “Morbid Sense of Humor,” (est. $30,000), a one-page story which was published in Despair #1 (Print Mint Inc, 1969); and a rarely-seen high-grade copy of The Incredible Hulk #1 (Marvel, 1962), CGC FN+ 6.5 (est. $30,000)
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.