1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Charles Dahan. I’m 46. I have a private practice in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. For the past 14 years, I’ve had the good fortune of having lived with an absolutely wonderful woman, Cecilia. We have two amazing children; Julian (5) and Selina (7).
I’ve been reading comics for over 40 years. I can still remember my older sister Dalia buying me my first comic book; Amazing Spider-Man #124 (Summer, 1973). I can think of very few things which have invited as much joy and escapism in my life as comics. Buying comic book artwork was a natural and inevitable progression of my lifelong admiration for the art form.
2. Which piece in your gallery is your favorite?
If I had to choose one today, it would be the Superior Spider-Man variant cover painting by Adi Granov. To me, this is one of those pieces which defines and personifies the artist and the creative potential of the medium.
Truth be told, if you asked me this same question yesterday, I could have just as easily said my favorite piece in my gallery was Gabriele Dell’Otto’s Doctor Strange widescreen painting. It’s my definitive “I can’t believe I own this” piece. I receive more inquiries about this piece than all the other pieces I own combined.
There are so many wonderful artists today pushing the boundaries and limits of the art form. It’s remarkable. This is a great time to be buying comic book artwork.
3. How long have you been collecting comic art and what prompted you to start?
I actually started by accident. Back in the late 80s or early 90s, a friend of mine had given me a Gil Kane page from Amazing Spider-Man #101. It didn’t hit me at first but it eventually turned into one of the coolest things I ever owned. There’s something truly remarkable about holding a piece of history in your hands. While the piece has since been traded to acquire other artwork I resonated with even more, I’ll never forget my first piece. Thanks Don M.!
Once I (finally) got a real job, I was in a far better position to acquire the pieces I wanted most, namely paintings by various comic art masters, e.g., Joe Jusko, Simone Bianchi, Gabriele Dell’Otto, Adi Granov, Bruce Timm, Steve Rude, and so on. I love them all. At this stage of my collecting, I only buy painted or colored pieces.
4. How do you display/store your collection at home?
As I also collect statues, as well as share a home with three other people, there is some competition for display space. Thankfully, I don’t overdo it with either hobby so there’s sufficient space to adequately display both. My paintings are displayed in my office. It’s my sanctum sanctorum.
It really helps having rules and guidelines to collecting, otherwise things can quickly become out of control. I won’t buy something unless I intend to frame and display it so there’s nothing to store in portfolios. It’s my number one rule. I do not actually store any pieces I own. If for whatever reason the artwork won’t be framed, I’ll sell or trade the piece and buy something else I will frame. I’ve never been able to collect artwork any other way.
5. What are your top five most wanted original pages or commissions?
If I answered that question, I may inadvertently double the asking price of the piece I want! Ironically, the majority of my most coveted pieces are largely driven by nostalgia and aren’t paintings. My dream comic art pieces would include Steve Ditko’s cover art to Spider-Man Annual #1, George Perez’s gatefold cover art to Wonder Woman #10, Jack Kirby’s cover art to Fantastic Four #49, John Romita Sr. and Alex Ross’ collaboration painting (homage to Spectacular Spider-Man Magazine #2, 1968) and lastly, Alex Ross’ World’s Finest piece produced for the Warner Bros. lithograph gallery.
Hopefully, in my lifetime, I will acquire at least one of these pieces. Incidentally, if you ask me this same question next week, I may give you a completely different answer... Thanks for stopping by my gallery!
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