As you’ve probably heard elsewhere, Heritage Auction recently sold a piece of original comics artwork for $448,125.00 . That piece of paper? The iconic image from issue #3 of Batman: The Dark Knight, showing Batman and the new Robin swinging over Gotham.
Congratulations on whomever won this amazing piece! Here it is in color.
Of course, there were many other items for sale at the auction, including some nice Miller/Janson pages from Daredevil, and two other pages from The Dark Knight Returns. (Death of the Joker, $41,825.00; Batman in Disguise, $13,145.00).
So, what was the #2 item sold at the auction? Oh, just a painting of some ducks in the wild. Carl Barks’ oil painting of Donald and his nephews on vacation (CB Oil 37) sold for $179,250.00 . Inspired by Walt Disney’s Vacation Parade #1, this large format painting was produced in 1972. There were 24 other Barks items in the auction, with seven pieces in the top 24 items sold. There were actual art pages from the comics (rare, given that Disney retained ownership of most of the artwork). The best deal, of which I bid, was the Celestial Arts “Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck” hardcover, which included a lithograph. It sold, to someone else, for the bargain price of $388.38 . Scroll down to see a rare Carl Barks Mickey Mouse!
#3 on the hit parade was a curiosity, but WOW! what a find! Someone paid $131,450.00 for two bound volumes of the first twenty-four issues of Action Comics. Heritage Auctions hypothesizes that the issues were bound in the 1960s, given the penciled prices (!!) on the covers, and the fact that the individual issues would have been worth more in later decades. HA values the entire set at “Overstreet 2010 VG 4.0 value for group = $231,758.” So the winning bidder got a bargain! The consignor set a challenge of collecting Action Comics #1-200, and having accomplished his goal, sold the entire collection at this auction. There was even a coverless copy of Action #1 which sold for $33,460.00!
The most affordable item? A copy of A Fighting Man of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs – Western Penn Copy (Canaveral Press, 1962), which sold for $21.00 .
I’ll let Beat readers peruse the auction results at their leisure, but I’ll include some of the more interesting items below. Click on the pictures to go to the catalog. HA requires a free registration to view the final prices, but you can browse without it. For you art lovers, search the other auctions. Heritage has an amazing illustration auction which includes some amazing artists and pieces!
I’ve been writing for The Beat since July of 2010.
I’ve been reading comics since 1974, collecting since 1984, and spreading the graphic novel gospel since 1994.
I’m a bookseller, a librarian, an amateur scholar, a cool uncle, and a comics evangelist.
Ask me anything!