Heritage Auctions Facilitates Deal With 'Stolen' Comic Art, Mike Kaluta And Bernie Wrightson


10891972_688129301301411_5240561915923052498_nHeritage Auctions are holding an auction of vintage comics and original comic book artwork in February. Original Todd McFarlane Amazing Spider-Man covers, Al Feldstein's cover to Panic #4, original 1918 art from Krazy Kat, a page from Dark Knight, Frank Frazetta's Death Dealer and a CGC 4.5 copy of Batman #1, there is lots to drool over here. And I'm sure we will, in detail.

Including, as Dave Roach discovered, unpublished original artwork by some of the greats. He posted on Facebook:

Many years ago some of the top young talent in American comics put together 3 issues of a comic called Web of Horror for Bob Sproul of Cracked fame. A 4th issue was prepared but never published and much of the art disappeared. Well….. it's all up for auction in Heritage's big February sale- including this stunning strip by Ralph Reese…. other strips were drawn by Berni Wrightson and Mike Kaluta so it would have been an incredible issue.


But Mike Kaluta was on hand to point out a rather unfortunate fact.

Michael Wm Kaluta None of those 4 pages were Sproul's property… he just took them, along with others, and disappeared… it's terrific to see them for the first time in what, 40+ years!

George Khoury Sorry to hear that, Michael. Might be something worth mentioning to Heritage.

Michael Wm Kaluta Did that… "Give us Proof and we'll see what we can do…"

Regarding Bernie Wrightson's work, also for auction, Ray Lago posted:

In A Look Back, Bernie wrote: "They left no forwarding address. They just sort of vanished like something in a Grade B spook show. They took most of the originals with them and none of us had yet been paid for the fourth issue."

I contacted Heritage about the situation last week, who didn't appear to be aware of the situation. They asked for a little time to investigate. Today Todd Hignite, Vice President at Heritage Auctions, told me:

We've reached out to all the artists represented by the group of Web of Horror artwork in our Feb. 19-21 auction, and have facilitated an agreeable and fair solution between our consignor and those artists we've been able to make contact with, so the artwork will be sold in the February auction.

Which is probably the best result we could have hoped to hear. The auction will continue and the artists are happy with… whatever has been arranged. And bidders can make their bids in good conscience.

Everyone wins!

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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