The original art for The Amazing Spider-Man #100 sold for $478,000, at Heritage Auctions on Friday, setting a world record for the most expensive Marvel Comics Silver or Bronze Age cover ever sold at public auction.
It also is the most expensive piece of Spider-Man art drawn by legendary artist John Romita, Sr.
The winning bidder chose to remain anonymous.
The previous public auction record for a piece of Spider-Man art drawn by Romita, Sr., was set by Heritage Auctions in 2013 when his cover for The Amazing Spider-Man #121 (Marvel, 1973) sold for $286,800.
Considered one of the most iconic covers of the 1970s, the cover masterfully portrays Spidey and dozens of famous canon characters. Collaborating with the legendary Stan Lee and artist Frank Giacoia, the trio 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.
The original cover was offered during Heritage’s Comics & Comic Art Auction held online and in Dallas this week.
“A true work of art, the winning bidder got a lot of bang for the buck in that the cover depicts so many iconic characters,” Heritage Auctions’ Senior Vice President Ed Jaster said. “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.”
Presented in Marvel Comics’ popular “floating heads” style, more than two dozen famous faces surround a full-body image of Spider-Man. Vicious villains such as Kingpin, Doctor Octopus, Scorpion and the Beetle appear; and Peter Parker’s girlfriends Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy, his beloved Aunt May and Parker’s boss at the Daily Bugle, J. Jonah Jameson, are also depicted.
Top sellers on the auction’s first day included a copy of Batman #1 (DC, 1940), which sold for $334,600 and the first appearance of Green Lantern from All American Comics #16 (DC, 1940), which brought $215,100.
The auction continued on Saturday with a Signature Internet Session, which included a copy of Spider-Man #1 (Marvel, 1963) and a high-grade copy of Fantastic Four #52 (Marvel, 1966), which features the first appearance of Black Panther, a character that shattered box office records last week when the superhero appeared in the blockbuster film of the same name.
Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer, with offices across the US, Europe and Hong Kong.
The Internet’s most popular auction-house website, HA.com, has over one million registered bidder-members, and searchable free archives of four million past auction records with prices realized, descriptions and enlargeable photos.
The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a "freelance comics operative", currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY.
John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor.
He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY.
Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.