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Tintin art

Tintin comic book art breaks auction record at $3.1M

Tintin art
Tintin ‘Blue Lotus’ original comic book cover art was auctioned for a record $3.1 million on Jan. 14, 2021 in Paris. The image above is unrelated to the auction art and is shown for illustrative purposes only. Photo courtesy of LiveAuctioneers and AntikBar

PARIS (AP) – A Tintin drawing by the Belgian artist Herge sold at auction Thursday in Paris for 2.6 million euros ($3.1 million), breaking the record for the most expensive comic book art in history.

The 1936 work in Chinese ink, gouache and watercolor was destined as a cover for The Blue Lotus, the fifth volume of the adventures of Tintin, a young reporter created by Herge.

The work features a red dragon on a black background by the frightened character’s face. It never graced store shelves because it was deemed too expensive to reproduce on a wide scale, a victim of the artist’s craftsmanship.

In The Blue Lotus, Tintin travels to China during the 1931 Japanese invasion with his dog, Snowy, to investigate and expose Japanese spy networks, drug-smuggling rings and other crimes.

The record price quoted in this report did not include auction fees. Work by Herge, whose real name was Georges Remi, previously set the record for the most expensive pieces of comic book art with the front pages of Tintin comic books that also sold for 2.6 million euros, including auction fees.

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AP-WF-01-14-21 1528GMT

Tintin art