Stellar Original Art in Heritage Comics & Comic Art Auction, May 13-14

Frazetta copy.jpgNEW YORK - Frank Frazetta’s vivid, action-packed The Norseman original 1972 book cover art, a personal favorite of the late, great artist, is expected to bring $350,000+ when it crosses the auction block, May 13-14, 2016, as the top lot in Heritage Auctions’ Comics & Comic Art Signature® Auction in New York, an event brimming with rare and spectacular examples of classic comic art.

“This image has all of the danger and drama you would expect in a Frazetta barbarian masterpiece,” said Todd Hignite, Vice President at Heritage Auctions. “It was a personal favorite of Frazetta’s. He was very pleased with the contrapposto stance of the main figure, which imbues him with power, tension and vitality. Frazetta was always in search of ways to depict the human figure in action and here he felt he had triumphed.”

Perhaps the most socially significant piece of art in the auction is Jack Kirby and Joe Sinnott’s unused 1966 Fantastic Four #52 original cover art, featuring the first appearance of Black Panther, the first black superhero in mainstream comics. While Marvel ultimately went a different direction than this cover, it still carries significant weight given the character that it features, his recent high profile re-launching and his upcoming appearance in film. It carries a pre-auction estimate of $80,000+. 

Gil Kane and Dave Cockrum provide another classic piece of original comic art in the form of the cover to 1975’s X-Men #95, only the third regular comic cover featuring the new X-Men and the only one to feature the ill-fated character Thunderbird, who would meet his demise in the issue. It is estimated at $100,000+. Another piece of spectacular original Marvel cover art up for bid is John Romita, Sr.’s 1973 Defenders #10 Cover Thor vs Hulk Original Art and Cover Proof, long considered one of the great superhero battle covers ever inked (estimate: $50,000+).

A true masterpiece of modern comic strip art, Charles Schulz’s original Peanuts Sunday Comic Strip Art, from Aug. 8, 1953 (estimate: $50,000+) - a very early strip in the series that clearly shows Schulz’s burgeoning mastery of both pen and story - features a classic final panel to make it one of the best original Peanuts examples to ever surface for auction. Bookending the original comic strip art is an incredibly rare original Bill Watterson Calvin and Hobbes daily comic strip from Nov. 14, 1987 (estimate: $50,000+), one of just a handful of original Calvin and Hobbes strips to ever surface for auction.

Leading the comics array in the auction is one of the most desirable copies of any Harvey comic in existence, Richie Rich #1 File Copy (Harvey, 1960) CGC NM+ 9.6, a book tied for the highest grade of this seminal comic (estimate: $25,000+), while a Superman #1  (DC, 1939) CGC PR 0.5 was downgraded because the back-cover pinup was cut out, but it continues to offer great eye appeal (estimate: $20,000+)  and a high-grade copy of Pep Comics #34 San Francisco Pedigree (MLJ, 1942) CGC NM- 9.2 offers a comic with a classic cover that is rare in any grade (estimate: $20,000+).

Further highlights include, but are not limited to:

Lou Fine Hit Comics #6 Cover Red Bee Original Art (Quality, 1940): Very few Lou Fine covers are known to exist from Fine, one of the greats of the Golden Age. Estimate: $50,000+.

Gray Morrow Marvel Preview #4 Cover Star-Lord Original Art (Marvel, 1976): The original art featuring the first appearance of Star-Lord of the Guardians of the Galaxy. Estimate: $10,000+.

Gene Colan and Paul Reinman Marvel Super-Heroes #13 First Carol Danvers Appearance Page 12 Original Art (Marvel, 1967): Panel four of this page was the world's very first glimpse of Carol Danvers, the future Ms. Marvel. Estimate: $5,000+.

Toy World Funnies #nn Wanamaker's Giveaway (Eastern Color, 1933) CGC GD/VG 3.0: Probably the rarest comic in this auction and certainly the earliest. A rare variation of Funnies On Parade, which is considered the first modern comic book. Estimate: $4,000+. 

Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States and the world’s third largest, with annual sales of more than $850 million, and 950,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and receive access to a complete record of prices realized, with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit HA.com.

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