The 10 lavish oil paintings are from the collection of Baltimore radio executive Kerby Confer. They reportedly set comic art auction records when they first went up for sale in the ’70s. Barks is little known by name outside of enthusiasts, but he wrote and drew Donald Duck on adventures with his Uncle Scrooge in some of the best-selling comics of the ’50s and ’60s, so his contributions to the Disney mythos are extensive.
He invented not only McDuck, the miser with a heart of gold, but also his rivals Flintheart Glomgold and Magica De Spell as well as the nefarious Beagle Boys and protagonists like Gladstone Gander, the Junior Woodchucks and Gyro Gearloose — all of whom appeared in the beloved 1980s animated TV series DuckTales (Woo-hoo!). Cartoonist Will Eisner labeled Barks “the Hans Christian Andersen of comic books.” He died in 2000.
You can bet that if I were rich enough to have a money bin I could swim in, I’d be bidding on some of these incredible works of art! (Though, to be honest, I’d settle for $20 to buy the DuckTales T-shirt I saw through the window this weekend at Hot Topic.)