Market Report – November 2017 ComicLink Focused and Heritage Sunday Auctions

Hello all, today we'll look at Heritage Sunday Auctions from July to September, and highlights from ComicLink’s November Focused Auction!

Heritage Sunday Auctions

Hitman #34, page 12 by John McCrea & Gary Leach – Sold for $501.90 in July 2017

Hitman #34, page 13 by John McCrea & Gary Leach – Sold for $454.10 in July 2017

For such a unique, memorable series, I’ve long felt that McCrea’s Hitman OA was rather undervalued. Are art collectors finally giving this title its due, and pushing prices up? Or is it because these consecutive pages depict a rare conversation between Superman and Tommy, from Garth Ennis’ Eisner Award-winning issue?

Amazing Spider-Man #76, page 7 by Jim Mooney & John Buscema – Sold for $8,365 in August 2017

Amazing Spider-Man #76, page 8 by Jim Mooney & John Buscema – Sold for $4,899.50 in August 2017

I’m highlighting these back-to-back 1969 pages to showcase the strength of the vintage ASM OA market. Even though they contain Mooney pencils and inks over Buscema layouts (i.e. not by the legends Steve Ditko or John Romita), these two pieces each fetched hefty 4-figure hauls. Add in the fact there aren’t any costumed or action shots in sight (discounting that small Spidey photo), and it’s obvious that old school ASM artwork is swinging happily along indeed!

Crisis on Infinite Earths #3, page 21 by George Perez – Sold for $2,868 in August 2017

Values of Perez Crisis artwork seem to be on the uptick – $2.9k is a solid sum for a non-#1 panel page featuring relatively obscure Western characters. I'd expected this to sell in the low-$2k's tops. Although, it does reinforce the impression that overall, prices of prime-period Perez OA have been increasing over the past couple of years.

Marmaduke daily strip dated 1-25-69 by Brad Anderson – Sold for $84 in September 2017

Ha, I have a soft spot for canines and always been tickled by Marmaduke. Here's a large (image area 17.75″x8″) singe-panel strip with bold, fluid inks and Zipatone featuring the lovable mutt. Throw in the fact it's a piece of American history from nearly 50 years ago, and $84 constitutes a monumental heist. At these prices, original comic strip artwork appears to be significantly undervalued – illustration art lovers take note!

Star Trek #76 paperback novel cover by Keith Birdsong – Sold for $746.88 in September 2017

Star Trek: Power of Command “Captain Sulu & USS Excelsior” plate by Keith Birdsong – Sold for $597.50 in September 2017

HA has been auctioning off Keith Birdsong Star Trek paintings in their Sunday Auctions for a couple years now, and they've been a treasure trove for ’Trek fans. Prices for original artwork of book covers and plates range from around $300 to $1.7k. These large 17″x28″ cover and 13″ diameter plate land in the meat of that range, representing fine value for some terrific art. Plus, they've got excellent head-on shots of USS Excelsior (my favourite ’Trek ship design)… and Sulu!

Doctor Strange Annual #1, page 26 by P. Craig Russell – Sold for $4,780 in September 2017

You don't often come across the respected PCR's Doctor Strange artwork, so when it does magically appear, collectors duel strongly for it. This is a marvelous page anyway, with Russell's lush rendering readily apparent on that serpent, multiple images of Strange, and pyrotechnic displays of the mystic arts!

ComicLink Focused Auction – 10 November 2017

CLink's Focused Auctions now run on a monthly basis and the last few have ballooned in size, as sellers find them to be convenient clearing outlets for large amounts of lower-tier OA. Prices this round generally seemed soft again, meaning these auctions remain attractive venues to pick up value-for-money OA in the sub-$300 range.

Uncanny X-Men #340, page 19 by Joe Madureira & Tim Townsend – $750

Here’s an example of the effect that selling on different auction platforms can have. Broadly speaking, for comparable pieces, hammer prices on Heritage Auctions are higher than on ComicLink. This Joe Mad UXM #340 page previously sold for $986 in an April 2015 HA Sunday, versus $750 in CLink’s Focused. Of course, auction environments are unpredictable, and a host of other factors may have played into this piece fetching a much lower price two and a half years later. Whichever way you look at it, 24% is a pretty steep haircut!

Sensational Spider-Man #31, page 16 by Angel Medina & Scott Hanna – $76

Considering that a bunch of similar SenSM pages all sold for $300 in May 2017’s CLink Focused Auction, 76 measly dollars for this mesmerizing Medina piece is grand larceny! I should definitely make it a point to wake up and bid in these Focused Auctions.

War of Kings: Who will Rule? #1, page 1 by Paul Pelletier & Andrew Hennessy – $186

Yet another woefully underpriced piece – I expected this full-page splash to end closer to $300. At the very least, a giant portrait of the Shi’ar Gladiator by popular penciller Pelletier should fetch more than $200 right?

Amazing Spider-Man #407, page 9 by Mark Bagley & Larry Mahlstedt – $1,000

Given the sizzling Bagley ASM OA market, one grand qualifies as a bargain for this amazing Spider-Man/Human Torch splash. My pre-auction estimate was $1.2k minimum, after factoring in that the final price would be dragged down because it’s not Spidey’s classic blue & red costume.

Dark Knight III: The Master Race #1 variant cover by Jae Lee – $4,700

$4.7k was the highest price by far for an item in this auction. It’s a costly amount for relatively new Lee OA, but probably fair considering Jae’s exquisite rendering and inking, and that many of his modern pieces are pencil-only. I’m not much of a Bat-fan, but briefly considered going after this cover simply because it’s such a striking image!

Until next time, happy collecting!

 

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

Original Art Aficionado archive

 

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