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    Description

    Frank Frazetta Egyptian Queen Painting Original Art (1969). For a man known for his exquisite paintings, this is quite possibly his single most famous piece... the artist's "Mona Lisa"... the enigmatic, beloved, and often imitated "Egyptian Queen" herself, a haunting image that legions of admirers have returned to time and time again.
    Having taken the comic book and newspaper strip worlds by storm in the 1950s and early 1960s, Frank Frazetta had already had a more successful career than most artists could even dream of before turning his otherworldly talents to book and comic cover fantasy artwork in the mid-1960s. In short order, he reinvented and massively expanded the entire field of fantasy illustration, single-handedly selling hundreds of thousands of books and scores of wildly popular posters along the way.
    Frazetta would produce some of his most incredible work during this period with each piece helping to hone his craft, leading up to this spectacular painting in 1969, the peak of the artist's creative powers. While Frazetta would continue to produce paintings for another 30 years, this unforgettable image captured the hearts of legions and remains burned into the minds of generations. The Egyptian Queen first appeared in print as the cover for Eerie magazine #23 in mid-1969, and as multiple prints and posters over subsequent decades.
    The luster of the paint, especially on the marble column and the supple form of the Queen herself, created an amazingly realistic and almost hypnotizing effect... pulling the viewer into the world of Queen Nefera. Her lovely printed skirt, a veritable peacock's plume, drapes seductively down the steps in this incredibly powerful and lushly painted composition. Frank Frazetta had the absolutely unique ability to paint what he envisioned in his mind (the main reason his preliminaries for works were so seemingly simple and tiny), going directly to the canvas with no tracing, no finished drawing, to paint what he saw in his mind's eye. To say this is a rare gift is a huge understatement - no other artist has been able to convey this same immediacy. It is especially exemplified in the works where Frazetta was asked to paint whatever he pleased, with the publisher then commissioning a story written to reflect the painted image. The result was always a unique, dynamic image that above all else rivets attention and elicits a visceral reaction from the viewer.
    Although Frazetta would revise many of his published works from this era even years after publication, in this instance he seemed to know that The Egyptian Queen was an unqualified masterpiece from the outset. Immediately upon receiving the piece back from publisher Warren in 1969, Frazetta made only very slight and subtle changes, softening the Queen's eyes to make them even more resonant, thus creating this definitive, strikingly wistful visage that has become indelibly fixed in all fans' minds from the scores of prints, posters, and publications of all sorts over many decades, including the painting's iconic 1977 publication as the cover of Creepy #92. This masterpiece has resided with the Frazetta family since its creation, so this is the first time it has ever been offered on the market.
    Although Frazetta typically worked on solid surfaces such as canvas wrapped board or pressboard, this piece was masterfully crafted in oil on a 20" x 26" stretched canvas. It has been open front framed to 24" x 30", and it is signed and dated in the lower left of the 19.75" x 25.5" image area. There are some minor drips (it is unclear if they are stains or paint drips) that are all-but-invisible unless viewed with a UV light source, and there are a few tiny white specks in the image area, as well as minor surface wear commensurate with age. There exists minor inpainting, primarily near the margins, only visible under UV light and most likely by the artist's hand. The painting presents beautifully with incredible eye appeal and is in Very Good to Excellent condition.

    Please note, this lot is available for inspection in person by special arrangement; to inquire, please contact Todd Hignite (ToddH@HA.com).


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    Edit May 12, 2019: The sentence in italics regarding inspection of the item was revised.       



    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2019
    16th-18th Thursday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 29
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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