Market Report – May 2017 Heritage Signature Auction (Part 1)

Hi all, today let’s look at some results from HA’s Signature Auction on 18-20 May 2017! I’ll try something different this time, focusing exclusively on OA from two titles: Amazing Spider-Man and (Uncanny) X-Men. Some artists had multiple pieces from the same title in this auction, out of which I selected just one to highlight. Artwork from other titles and artists will be discussed next week.

This three-day auction contained OA from a variety of artists, spanning a broad swath of ASM’s and UXM’s storied histories. It’s a good opportunity to get a representative picture of the markets for these titles, as all results come from the same event, providing a relatively level playing field to compare results. Of course, when comparing them, we also have to consider each piece’s attributes and context within its artist’s body of work. Alright, on to the results!

Amazing Spider-Man

Amazing Spider-Man #23, page 17 by Steve Ditko – $104,562.50

Decent Ditko Spidey action panel pages start at around $60k these days, and as this piece shows, exceptional ones can cross the 6-figure mark!

Amazing Spider-Man #43, page 19 by John Romita Sr. – $43,020

Further demonstrating the early-ASM OA market’s effervescence, quality JRSR Spidey action panel pages now cost what Ditko’s did three years ago!

Amazing Spider-Man #139, page 18 by Ross Andru, Frank Giacoia & Dave Hunt – $5,736

This piece highlights the power of a splash page – Andru costumed-Spidey action panel pages go for about half what this non-costumed, non-action splash sold for.

Amazing Spider-Man #191, page 8 by Keith Pollard & Mike Esposito – $1,613.25

Amazing Spider-Man #228, page 12 by Rick Leonardi & Dave Simons – $1,314.50

Amazing Spider-Man #245, page 14 by John Romita Jr. & Dave Simons – $1,493.75

JRJR first-run ASM artwork has been holding steady at this mid-$1k price point for more than five years now, which probably means it’s good value in today’s OA market, given the price explosion in so many other segments during that time!

Amazing Spider-Man #252, page 7 by Ron Frenz & Brett Breeding – $14,340

Values of Frenz ASM OA have risen nicely over the past couple years, with Spidey action panel pages starting at around $3k these days. This page from ASM #252 is a price-outlier, as it hails from the key issue which first introduces the black symbiote costume, plus it contains several action shots and guest characters.

Amazing Spider-Man #316, page 5 by Todd McFarlane – $11,950

This page went for exact FMV; please check out my Todd McFarlane Artist Spotlight for in-depth discussion of his artwork!

Amazing Spider-Man #361, page 12 by Mark Bagley & Randy Emberlin – $3,943.50

$3.9k is a high but justifiable price for this panel page – it’s from the landmark Carnage 1st Appearance issue, and contains a particularly striking border-breaking Spidey shot. Do head over to my Mark Bagley Artist Spotlight for more on Mark’s OA!

Amazing Spider-Man #500, page 9 by John Romita Jr. & Scott Hanna – $2,629

Yet another example of the appeal of a splash – regular panel pages from this later JRJR run on ASM fetch a fraction of that $2.6k hammer price.

(Uncanny) X-Men

X-Men #2, page 12 by Jack Kirby & Paul Reinman – $26,290

Kirby’s early X-Men OA continues to gradually appreciate in value, with all three X-Men #2 pages in this auction fetching solid prices. I feel this page was the strongest one aesthetically, but it finished in between the $22,705 page 5 and $33,460 page 3.

X-Men #26, page 15 by Werner Roth & Dick Ayers – $2,868

X-Men #50, page 13 by Jim Steranko & John Tartaglione – $14,340

Steranko only drew two issues of X-Men – Jim’s scarcity of mutant work and artistic prominence combine to explain the $14.3k hammer price; it being a half-page splash doesn’t hurt either!

X-Men #100, page 4 by Dave Cockrum – $13,742.50

Values of Cockrum’s X-Men artwork have been on an upswing the past couple years, and in today’s market, $13.7k seems a fair price for this action-packed page from Dave’s first run on X-Men.

X-Men #137, unused page by John Byrne & Terry Austin – $21,510

$21.5k may seem like a lot for an unused page, but when you consider that it was originally drawn for the classic “Phoenix Must Die” UXM #137, the realization dawns that this page would probably fetch double the price if it was published as X-Men canon!

X-Men #154, page 13 by Dave Cockrum, Bob Wiacek & Joe Rubinstein – $4,660.50

This Cockrum second-run page is further evidence of the strengthening market for his X-Men artwork; three years ago it might have sold for only half the $4.7k hammer price!

X-Men #166, pages 14 & 15 by Paul Smith & Bob Wiacek – $3,824

The buyer of this double-page spread got a good deal considering the widespread acclaim for PMS’ art, the presence of multiple X-Men in this piece, and the fact it’s from Lockheed the Dragon’s 1st Appearance issue!

Uncanny X-Men #277, page 8 by Jim Lee & Scott Williams – $4,063

The price of Lee’s UXM OA appears to be on the move again, further to my analysis in the Jim Lee Artist Spotlight. This page last sold for $3,107 in November 2015’s Heritage auction.

Uncanny X-Men #282, page 12 by Whilce Portacio & Art Thibert – $1,105.38

Portacio is one of the seven Image Comics co-founders, and his most desirable work is from the short 10-issue run on UXM. Whilce’s industry prominence, rarity of prime artwork, and rise of the ’90s Effect amongst OA collectors, combine to explain the increasing price of Portacio UXM artwork. Add in the fact that this page is from Bishop’s 1st Appearance issue, and I’d say the buyer snagged a nice deal.

Until next time, happy collecting!


Here’s Part 1 & Part 2 of the guide to collecting original art; and my CAF gallery.

Original Art Aficionado archive


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