Wolverton Art Day!
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How many of these Mars Attacks paintings exist?

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Holy Crud! Card #1! I am in awe & shock! & wish I was wealthy.

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How many of these Mars Attacks paintings exist?

 

I believe the entire set exists and Topps sold them years ago.. I don't think this came from David Saunders unless he re-aquired it years after they sold

 

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How many of these Mars Attacks paintings exist?

 

I believe the entire set exists and Topps sold them years ago.. I don't think this came from David Saunders unless he re-aquired it years after they sold

 

Here is what the description says...maybe it was another artist's son?

 

Presented is the most extraordinary nonsport artwork we could ever hope to present, the best and the most historically significant Topps nonsport artwork in existence, and an artwork that arguably represents the heart and soul of all Topps nonsport artworks: The original painting for the iconic card #1 "The Invasion Begins" of the Mars Attacks set! This is the card that started it all. This is the artwork that launched the entire Mars Attacks phenomenon. This is the original painting to the most famous image of the entire Mars Attacks set. The iconic image on this painting represents the set in both the card-collecting world and in the larger world of American pop culture.

 

The Mars Attacks set issued by Topps needs no introduction. The artwork from the set in card form has been ingrained into the consciousness of popular culture, and has had a lasting impact not only on the youth of the early 1960s, but on all generations since. Collectors have long appreciated the cards as the most significant and classic nonsport issue of the era. The extraordinary artwork, created by Norm Saunders, distinguishes this set as the most highly regarded of all nonsport Topps card issues. We have long known the whereabouts of the artwork to the famous card #1 "The Invasion Begins." For years we have made countless calls to request the honor of presenting it at auction. We finally got a "yes." It is a special honor to offer this painting, which is one of the true Holy Grails of all nonsport original artwork. It is unlikely that we will ever have a more important nonsport artwork. Any original Mars Attacks artwork is an incredible find, but the card #1 "The Invasion Begins" painting is the best, most historically significant, and the most iconic image of all.

 

The image on the artwork speaks for itself. Only thirteen of the fifty-five artworks that comprise the set even feature a Martian. But the significance of this artwork is far greater, both literally and figuratively illustrating the launch of the story of "Mars Attacks!" It is the most famous card in the set, and at a glance provides the introduction to the Mars Attacks card set and the story the set tells.

 

Original Mars Attacks artworks are, of course, extremely rare. Theoretically all Mars Attacks original paintings exist, but only a few examples have ever come to the marketplace. Auction records for original Mars Attacks paintings exceed $30,000. Robert Edward Auctions has been fortunate to offer a total of four Mars Attacks original artworks over the years. In 2004, we sold the painting for card #25 for $37,375. In 2006, we had the privilege of offering three Mars Attacks artworks (for cards numbers 5, 23, and 42), which sold for $29,000, $19,720, and $20,880 respectively. We have not had one since.

 

"The Invasion Begins" original painting has never before been offered for sale privately or at auction. It has been locked away unseen and unknown to the formal collecting world for decades. The owner is not a nonsport card or art collector. The painting was inherited by our consignor over thirty years ago from his father, who had a very significant personal connection to both Norm Saunders and the Mars Attacks set. It had been given to him as a special keepsake and has remained in the family ever since. The painting has always been saved and carefully preserved these many years precisely because the family has always appreciated its enormous significance. Eventually the time comes when an owner decides to sell items simply to make sure they are appreciated and fall into the right hands. Such is the case here. The value of Mars Attacks paintings, like all original artwork, is very subjective. This is a priceless painting, in our opinion, a true treasure that has a far greater significance both to card collecting and to popular culture than perhaps any other original nonsport card artwork. All Mars Attacks artworks are masterpieces, but this one is the most extraordinary and important of all. We will always look back and remember the presentation of this painting at auction as one of the single most extraordinary nonsport items that we could ever have hoped to offer. It is a true privilege to document the existence of the original Mars Attacks painting to card #1 "The Invasion Begins" and to present it to the collecting world in this auction. The artwork (5.5 x 3.75 inches) has normal production-related remnants on the reverse and is otherwise in Near Mint to Mint condition. Reserve $15,000. Estimate $30,000+.

 

 

 

Edited by capt_comics

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It is certainly an iconic image. With regards to being the most expensive non-sport card artwork in existence it has to be right up there with some of the classic Wacky Packages artwork. Remember the Capt Crud card sold for over $35K a few years ago.

 

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Man alive.... 5.5 x 3.75 inches!

 

That's more $ per square inch than a Frazetta painting.

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Probably one of the top ten iconic images of the SF/Red scare of the 50s and 60s in my opinion

 

 

 

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it truly is iconic. It would be like Frazetta's Death dealer coming up for sale. I personally would rather have #19 Burning flesh though! :cloud9:

Edited by shiverbones

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Hard to imagine it going any higher, but who knows?

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For those of you who have not heard of them, Robert Edwards is one of the leading sellers of Sports Memorabilia in the country. They have one auction per year and it is an event with exceptional quality and quantity. As an example the same sale that had the Mars Attacks card also had a nice mid-grade Honus Wagner card for sale (which sold for mid 6 figures). They have also sold previous Mars Attacks artwork and are well know among card collectors as having primo material.

 

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it truly is iconic. It would be like Frazetta's Death dealer coming up for sale. I personally would rather have #19 Burning flesh though! :cloud9:

 

But that's just for us Mars Attacks collectors in the know :)

 

 

or how about #36 destroying a dog :gossip:

 

 

 

 

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I'm all about #21 Prize Captive

 

-e.

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Prize Captive would be my 2nd favorite :cloud9:

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it truly is iconic. It would be like Frazetta's Death dealer coming up for sale. I personally would rather have #19 Burning flesh though! :cloud9:

 

But that's just for us Mars Attacks collectors in the know :)

 

 

or how about #36 destroying a dog :gossip:

 

 

 

 

I'm not convinced Destroying a dog is by Saunders. I think there was a lot of painted art done by other hands in that set. That being said, it's an AWESOME card!

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it truly is iconic. It would be like Frazetta's Death dealer coming up for sale. I personally would rather have #19 Burning flesh though! :cloud9:

 

But that's just for us Mars Attacks collectors in the know :)

 

 

or how about #36 destroying a dog :gossip:

 

 

 

 

I'm not convinced Destroying a dog is by Saunders. I think there was a lot of painted art done by other hands in that set. That being said, it's an AWESOME card!

 

David told me he had quite a few other "artists" that helped him out, kind of like a Saunders studio.

 

Could be this is one?

 

 

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I am glad to hear that, I have had many people argue with me that I was crazy. I will post 4 cards, 2 which are certainly saunders, and two which I think can't possibly be. I specifically showed 4 cards that feature smaller aliens, as even at this size, Norm's mastery is apparent, and they look great & completely in proportion. Compared to the other 2 cards there is no way it's the same hand. This would make an actual Saunders painted original with an alien that much more rare.

 

the middle 2 are Saunders. Note also the poor facial features in #1 & 4, vs. what Saunders could do at that scale in #2 & 3.

 

 

 

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Can anyone explain why Saunders and other artists who worked on these cards kept the original so small in size (roughly 4x6")?

S

 

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Topps demands that size, even still to this day. 5"x7" (twice up) is what size originals turned in must be, but it was smaller than that in the past. Also, from a production standpoint, Norm made so little, these had to be done as fast as possible to make it worth while.

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Thanks for the post. That's what I love about this place, it's a great place for information. Too bad about the size. I could only imagine how they would look on a larger scale.

 

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