Storm Nelson, Trigan Empire art offered in this week’s Catawiki International Original Comics Art Auction

More items of Eagle comic art, including a “Dan Dare” illustration by one of the strip’s early artists, Greta Tomlinson, and “Trigan Empire” art on offer in this week’s Catawiki International Original Comics Art Auction – and much more.

The British comic art lots this week are as follows…

Trapped in a cell, Storm Nelson” and friends have to deal with some lively snakes in a page from the eponyomous strip for Eagle, first published in 1958, art by Richard Jennings.

“Storm Nelson” was a popular strip for the comic, centring on a former officer of the Royal Navy, Commander Nelson, who owned the ship Silver Spray, part of the Silver Fleet. It ran from October 1953 to March 1962, drawn by Richard Jennings, with scripts for the earlier stories by Guy Morgan (under the pen name Edward Trice), and, later, Jennings wrote the stories as well.

This item is being offered by a UK seller, so no pesky customs costs to worry about.

In addition to the strip, “Storm Nelson” novels were published, including Storm Nelson and the Sea Leopard.

Richard Edward Jennings (1921-1997) - Original Ink page For Eagle - Storm Nelson - (1958)

Another page from the Robot Archie story, “Bodyguard to the Menaced Rajah, this page published in Lion cover dated 16th January 1960, artist Ted Kearon delivering a smashing panel of a royal procession with elephants front and centre…

Robot Archie, "Bodyguard to the Menaced Rajah", this page published in Lion cover dated 16th January 1960, art by Ted Kearon

A “Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire” page, from the story “Revenge of Darak, first published in Look and Learn in 1967, art by Don Lawrence

Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire - Revenge of Darak - art by Don Lawrence (1967)

Finally, along with many other smashing European art pages, Eagle fans may want to get their hands on an illustration of a Venusian Treen by Greta Tomlinson (1927–2021), one of the Dan Dare studio team run by Frank Hampson.

Venusian Treen by Greta Tomlinson (1927–2021) - date unknown

There’s no indication of when the art was created, but artist Martin Baines and comics archivist tells us the picture was produced for Nicholas Hill as way of thanks for inviting Greta to his Charterhouse Eagle Day in November 1998. This item is also being offered by a UK seller.

• This week’s Catawiki International Original Comics Art Auction, closing at 7.00pm on Thursday 22nd December 2022 – view the full catalogue here

Dan Dare Web Links

• Check out the downthetubes Dan Dare guide – a potted history of the strips, spin-offs (made and unmade), merchandise and more

• Read our list of currently available Dan Dare collections

• Dan Dare collections and related books on AmazonUK (downthetubes Affiliate Link)

• Read our checklist of Dan Dare comic stories published to date, compiled by John Freeman, Jeremy Briggs, Richard Sheaf and Steve Winders (Google Doc, further information always welcome)

Potential Additional International Auction Costs

This advice box was last updated on Friday 6th May 2022

The UK’s departure from the European Union means there may be additional import duties on sales.

Prior to Brexit, the effective rate of UK tax on imports of art was 5%, which is lower than most other European countries. An owner could previously import an artwork to the UK from outside the EU and was then free to transport it to other EU countries, where the import tax rates may be higher, without incurring any further import-related tax charges. If the owner then wished to bring the artwork back to the UK, there would also have been no further tax charge.

The Guardian previously reported that online orders up to £135 are now supposed to have the UK’s prevailing VAT rate added at the point of sale by the EU retailer, which has to have registered with HM Revenue & Customs.

While buying from European sellers carries the sting of larger costs, the auction house Catawiki does now endeavour to provide an estimate of those in its lot descriptions.

Unfortunately, many smaller EU-based retailers have decided that the paperwork of collecting UK VAT is not worth the hassle and as a result will no longer supply UK consumers. It has also meant that some British sellers will no longer export to Europe.

This apolitical guide outlines what you should be aware of when buying or selling art internationally but is a work in progress

Don’t forget Catawiki runs several regular auctions, including a dedicated US Comics auction, too – check out all the current lots on offer here

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. Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Explorer (previously known as Star Trek 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.



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