Two pages of Hergé adventure story King Ottokar’s Sceptre auctioned in Paris, achieving higher price than expected
Sunday 1 May 2016
“This is only the second time a Tintin plate has exceeded a million euros,” Eric Leroy, comic book expert at French auction house Artcurial, told AFP.
A double page plate also from King Ottokar’s Sceptre sold for more than €1.5m at Sotheby’s in Paris in October.
Artcurial had estimated Saturday’s lot would fetch between €600,000 and €800,000, before fees. “Over a million euros, this is an excellent result,” said Leroy. “Hergé’s universe still conquers,” he added, referring to the cartoonist behind the famous comic.
The work in blue watercolor, gouache and ink was bought on the phone “by a European collector, a long-time fan,” said Leroy.
Published in 1939, King Ottokar’s Sceptre is the eighth instalment of the adventures of the intrepid boy reporter Tintin by the Belgian artist.
Intended by Hergé as criticism of Nazi Germany, the story sees Tintin help thwart a plot to overthrow the king of a fictional central European country which is threatened by an aggressive neighbour.
Tintin works are becoming increasingly popular with collectors. An ink drawing for the cover pages of the Tintin books published from 1937 to 1958 was sold for €2.65m by Artcurial in 2014, a world record.