Jack Kirby and Joe Sinnott Fantastic Four
#55 Spectacular Silver Surfer Half-Splash Page 3 Original Art
. Be ready to bid, Marvelites. For this Marvel
masterwork from the immortal classic "When Strikes the Surfer"
hails from the highest summit of the legendary Stan Lee-Jack Kirby
collaboration, with superb Silver Age inks by the greatest "King"
Kirby brush-man ever -- the incomparable Joe Sinnott. Here is the
Marvel Age of Comics at its zenith, with Lee's humanist dialogue,
Kirby's majestic, awe-inspiring (and art form-altering) pencils,
and Sinnott's perfectly balanced, and super-streamlined dynamism.
Peak era Kirby pages showcasing the Surfer, one of Marvel's most
popular and definitive characters from the psychedelic sixties,
always command a premium and this awesome example truly has it all.
In fact, Stan "the Man" thinks so highly of the iconic half-page
splash in the lower panel, that a blown-up version hung prominently
in his office can be spotted in his recent cameo in the HBO series
(see online image).
If Jack Kirby identified with Ben Grimm/the Thing in body, perhaps
both his spirit and Stan Lee's soul were claimed by the Silver
Surfer, as the two would never collaborate on a character more
messianic, conveying such a sublime sense of grandeur and awe of
the limitless cosmic vistas in the boundless universe. Here,
depicted in full glory, in only his fourth appearance, the Surfer
had become a fallen angel, reluctantly accepting his fate as a
"stranger in a strange land," ready for the ultimate journey. Kirby
believed, and it shows with every line. Artistic perfection
combines with the Surfer's alienated take on humanity's foibles to
create a true, self-contained work of art -- and who could top Stan
Lee's dialogue in that last panel?
As a note of provenance, our consignor informs us that he was
fortunate enough to purchase the page in the early 1980s from a
Comics Buyers Guide
ad, and later got an excited Lee to sign
the lower margin at a 1983 comic convention ("Excelsior" indeed).
The page has not been seen in the market, or displayed since its
original purchase -- until now. This beautiful, breathtaking piece
with a large-size image area of 12.5" x 18.5", remains in Excellent
In our studied opinion, with all the possible "desirability points"
aligning perfectly, this jaw-dropping find could very well be the
definitive image of the Lee/Kirby Silver Surfer, possibly the
single best Kirby FF
page we've ever offered, and arguably
one of the finest Silver Age Marvel pages to be had -- in short,
it's a "holy grail" for the advanced comic art collector.
Kirby, Jack:Jack Kirby has received world-wide recognition for his long comic book career and accomplishments. He is regarded by historians and fans as one of the major innovators and most influential creators in the comic-book medium, thus earning the nick-name "King." Among Kirby's many co-creations are Captain America, the Newsboy Legion, the Challengers of the Unknown, the Fantastic Four, the Hulk, Thor, the Avengers, the X-Men, Silver Surfer, the New Gods, and countless other memorable heroes and villains.
Jack Kirby was never one to do things in expected ways. As an artist, Kirby had no formal training and instead learned his trade through practice, determination and on-the-job training. Having been rejected by various art schools and leaving Pratt Institute after only a week, Kirby found his own success and became one of the most recognized comic book artists of his time.
Born in 1917 in New York City, Kirby's birth name was Jacob Kurtzberg. His first break as an artist was in 1936, when he joined the Lincoln Newspaper Syndicate. After working on cartoons there for several years, Kirby continued to offer his skills elsewhere until he got a respectable position at Fox Feature Syndicate. It was here that Kirby began his partnership with Joe Simon, which proved to be very fruitful.
From here, Kirby took a job with Marvel, where he and Simon created the iconic Captain America. Though he found other projects at Marvel and DC, his next biggest success was Young Romance. He eventually ended his partnership with Simon and worked solo at both major comic outlets, again returning to superheroes with the Fantastic Four. Kirby continued to innovate until his death in 1994.
Kirby is remembered for the way he crafted a story with his art, creating characters that still resonate with readers today..
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