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Comics Photography

Long considered childish and largely ignored by the mainstream, the graphic novel has had to fight for recognition and its status as the ninth art. Today, fully integrated in the art world, graphic novels are knocking on the doors of auction houses and breaking new records every time - in 2014, an original page of Tintin hand drawn in ink by Hergé was valued at 2.5 million euros.

It's a common misconception that the graphic novel was invented in America in 1896 with the creation of Yellow Kid. In fact, we can trace it back to the 1830s and Swiss artist Rudolphe Töpffer, who came up with the theory of 'mixed' literature, merging constantly evolving drawings with short storylines.

Nevertheless, at the start of the 20th century it was indeed the Americans who were the first real consumers of comics. This popularity can be partly explained by the role of the press at the time. Two huge publishers - Heartz and Pulitzer - were locked in fierce competition to attract as many readers as possible and their combined efforts to improve production paved the way for huge technical progress, with the press able to print ever greater volumes ever more quickly. At the time, comic strips appeared in the form of satirical drawings and humorous adaptations suitable for all ages, but they quickly proved so popular that the strips were grouped together in books so that they could be revisited at leisure.

The 1930s marked the golden age of the graphic novel with the birth of the first super heroes like Superman and Batman, and the emergence of the famous Marvel and DC studios.

It was a similar story in Europe across the 30s and 50s as the Franco-Belgian school established itself with the emergence of brilliant authors such as Hergé and Franquin and the cult characters of the era: Tintin, Lucky Luke, Spirou… previously considered to be reserved for younger readers, from the 60s onwards graphic novels began to take on a more adult, less puritanical approach.

The graphic novel is by now an accomplished art form with its own grand masters, but it took on a new direction and joined the ranks of art history under the impetus of the precursors of pop art: Mel Ramos, Andy Warhol and, above all, Roy Lichtenstein.

In 1961 Lichtenstein painted one of his most famous works: Look Mickey. It was the first work by an artist to use the qualities of a comic strip, and it had a decisive impact on Lichtenstein's career. From then on, the artist freely used text bubbles and drawings from various comics and adapted them into his colourful pop art.

Meanwhile, the other side of the Pacific saw the creation of an art form very similar to graphic novels, which quickly rose to prominence: manga. Although it did not establish itself in France until the late 1990s, manga traces its origins back to the beginning of the 20th century. The master of Japanese print making, Hokusai, is said to be at the origins of manga (which comes from the word for 'sketches' or 'light image'). Inspired by the ancestral arts of Kabuki as well as the Ehon and Emaki illustrations, manga saw much of its huge successes thanks to constant developments in the press.

Kitazawa Rakuten, a household name in manga, is also widely recognised as the creator of the first school of graphic novels, which boasts an impressive array of talented alumni: Naoki Urasawa, Tezuka Osamu, Tatsumi Yoshihiro, Otomo Katsuhiro…

Explore the complex and surprising world of the 9th art with this unique modern selection of paintings, full editions and drawings. Discover the works of the best known artists, alongside young emerging talents like Lenil Yu, David Leroi, Lucio Forte… 

Collector’s Guide: Collecting Fine Art Photographs

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Vladimir Bazan, Paris - Jardin des Tuileries, Photography

Vladimir Bazan

Paris - Jardin des Tuileries, 2010
21.7 x 39.4 inch
Photography

$2,296

Caz In The Machine, Professor Ligan, Photography

Caz In The Machine

Professor Ligan, 2010
35.4 x 23.6 inch
Photography

$856

Aurore de Sousa, Portrait avec jardin n°2, Photography

Aurore de Sousa

Portrait avec jardin n°2, 2010
23.6 x 33.5 x 1.2 inch
Photography

$1,862

Patrick Rubinstein, Love Spray, Photography

Patrick Rubinstein

Love Spray, 2020
27.2 x 27.2 x 1 inch
Photography

$7,447

John Yuyi, On Sale, Photography

John Yuyi

On Sale, 2018
35.4 x 23.6 inch
Photography

$5,957

Patrick Blanc, Batman & Joker Theatre, Photography

Patrick Blanc

Batman & Joker Theatre, 2019
31.5 x 47.2 x 0.8 inch
Photography

$2,358

Alex Llovet, Beware Of The Dog 83, Photography

Alex Llovet

Beware Of The Dog 83, 2017
15.7 x 23.6 inch
Photography

$745

Anna Levesh, Clash, Photography

Anna Levesh

Clash, 2018
35.4 x 59.1 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$11,791

Elise Ortiou Campion, Instant Suspendu #8, Photography

Elise Ortiou Campion

Instant Suspendu #8, 2010
19.7 x 29.5 inch
Photography

$745

Elise Ortiou Campion, Instant Suspendu #8, Photography

Elise Ortiou Campion

Instant Suspendu #8, 2010
29.5 x 44.1 inch
Photography

$1,117

Polo Doury, Captain America, Photography

Polo Doury

Captain America, 2014
13 x 19 inch
Photography

$993

Jors, L'orangerie, Photography

Jors

L'orangerie, 2007
30.7 x 43.3 inch
Photography

$1,924

Tiphanie Soulie, Sans titre, Photography

Tiphanie Soulie

Sans titre, 2015
11.8 x 15.7 x 1.2 inch
Photography

Sold out

Tiphanie Soulie, Sans titre, Photography

Tiphanie Soulie

Sans titre, 2015
11.8 x 15.7 x 1.2 inch
Photography

Sold out

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