Holland’s Museum of Comic Art (MoCA), the first Dutch comics museum devoted entirely to all aspects of the Ninth Art, has just opened a fantastic new exhibition devoted entirely to the art of comic covers.
The exhibition signage, and accompanying catalogue, which you can order through the museum’s web site, are in Dutch and English.
Artists whose work features in this sixth exhibition curated by Ger Apeldoorn and Arie Korbee, include Edouard Aidans, Groo creator Sergio Aragones, Thunderbirds illustrator Graham Bleathman, Bert Bus, who drew new adventures of Robot Archie for the Dutch market, Dave Gibbons (his Watchmen-inspired cover for MAD magazine), Harold Gould, Fantastic Four co-creator Jack Kirby, Joe Kubert, Henk Kuijpers, who also provides the cover and promotional art for the exhibition, Don Lawrence, co-creator of The Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire, Daredevil and Sin City artist and writer Frank Miller, Moebius, Bernie Wrightson, and many, many more outstanding artists from across the globe.
One good image – the cover – says more than 1000 words when it comes to selling a comic, and “Covers“, which runs until 19th May 2024 at MoCA, located in Noordwijk aan Zee, provides an overview of beautiful, unique and valuable originals by national and international masters of the Ninth Art, featuring some 66 original works.
“The English language has an expression that says you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover,” notes the Museum. “It means that sometimes books can have more depth than you might think at first glance.
“Yet publishers of books and comics try to do just that. Coming up with covers that give people a correct and attractive picture of the content. Some of them have even turned it into a science, with their own rules and observations. Purple never sells, yellow stands out more and the hero always has to look straight at the reader…
“One point remains: original covers are more desirable to collectors than other comics because they do better on the wall. This exhibition brings together 66 beautiful and unique covers from the history of comics.
“They are linked by the most popular theme for comics: adventure. From science fiction and history, from cowboys and Indians to pirates… many great comic artists have ventured into it.”
The “Covers” exhibition is accompanied by the publication of a specially produced luxury hardcover catalogue, available in two versions from the museum shop (along with past catalogues, too). The standard edition, has a cover featuring the comic heroine Franka, which Henk Kuijpers created for the MoCA. A signed, limited edition, features a study by Jean Giraud for Blueberry on the cover and had a print run of just 100 copies, both available from the Museum shop.
The Museum of Comic Art, located in the heart of Noordwijk aan Zee, is the only museum in the Netherlands completely dedicated to showing original comic art from the Western world. A small but high-quality museum, it runs two exhibitions a year, and strives to show the best of domestic and foreign comic art (‘The Ninth Art’) to a wide audience. Always in its purest form: original works on paper.
It’s a must-see location for tourists who want to get acquainted with the wonderful world of comics.
• “Covers” run until 19th May 2024 at the Museum of Comic Art, Bomstraat 11 2202 GH Noordwijk | Web: museumofcomicart.nl
With thanks to Ger Apeldoorn
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. 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 “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.