1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
I was born in Lisbon almost four decades ago (age 37). I still live and work in this beautiful city with my gorgeous wife and daughters. I work in the IT Sector in financial roles as responsible of Controlling and have several hobbies that complement my main activity (at the very least in cost), collecting original artwork.
2. Which piece in your gallery is your favorite?
I guess as almost everybody I have several favorites but if I had to select one it would be the “Colombo Arrival to America” by the great HUNT Emerson. This was a commission I asked him to do and is full of details, the major one being his presence and that of my family in the lower right corner of the painting. It has a very special meaning and was made by one of my all-time favorite artists that I had the good fortune of getting in touch with and befriending.
I want to use the chance of this question to send a big THANK YOU to all the artists, galleries, CAF, and fellow collectors that I’ve been in touch with that make of this hobby one of the best I’ve ever known and it’s a real honor to be somehow part of it.
3. How long have you been collecting comic art and what prompted you to start?
I’ve been collecting comic art for the past five or six years, I loved comics all my life since I started reading, my imaginary in child was made with the adventures of Asterix, Spirou & Fantasio, and the Walt Disney characters.
My father took me to a lot of museums growing up and I became a fan of art in general, specially loving the surrealism (Magritte, Dali, and several others). One year before I married I started collecting original paintings of some artists that I could afford, some that already made a name in the market, and some just starting.
What prompted me to start was realizing it was possible to own the original artwork of comic artists.
I used to go to a comics convention in Portugal but never wanted to spend time in lines to have my books sketched and signed (if I tell you the names of artists that passed by and I missed… well, it’s better not to think of that).
So it all started some years ago when I met Jim Woodring at a convention and asked him for a commission, it would be my gift to my first daughter. I thought it was a lot of money to be paid for comic artwork but it would be worth it; we are talking about $100 USD. Well, as you can imagine $100 USD is very far now of what I spend on a single piece of art and as many of other collectors you can realize how sorry I am to not have started my collection years sooner…
4. How do you display/store your collection at home?
As I said before I usually go to museums and because of that I love to see the artwork hanging on the walls. Unfortunately my house isn’t very big and my wife stopped liking our collection when I wanted to frame my second comic artwork, so I’m confined to use one room (with some very few exceptions) to display my collection (you can see pictures of the room in my gallery). Fortunately my wife agrees in helping me choose the frames and the art on display are all professionally framed, it’s not cheap but they real have a big impact on the artworks helping them standing out even more. I don’t have any more space and when I want to put a new piece on the wall I have to trade for another and occupy its space… I have to buy a bigger home…
5. What are your top five most wanted original pages or commissions?
For this question I’m not going to be rational, in my opinion a important part of the fun of collecting comic artwork is trying to reach a next level that seemed impossible and I already got the chance to buy so many artworks I’ve never imagine I would be able to buy from so many fantastic artists.
So for the five I’m selecting I would have to be a lottery winner, rob a bank, assault a museum or all of them together and the top five are…
1 – A cover or great page with all the characters of Asterix by Urdezo;
2 – A cover of Mr. Natural or Fritz the Cat by Robert Crumb;
3 – A huge painting or a cover of Sandman by Dave McKean (I expect this one to be a real possibility someday, just don’t know when);
4 – A cover of Bone with all the main characters by Jeff Smith;
5 – A cover of Liberty Meadows with all the main characters by Frank Cho.
View Joao Antunes's Gallery