I have recently expanded my autograph collection to include original comic and sports art. I created a discussion about it two years ago. The hobby seems to be growing in popularity. There is a growing interest in not only commissioning artists to produce original works, but to also have the original works autographed by celebrities and athletes. I am currently undecided about having original comic and sports art autographed. I am considering it for a few of my pieces.
I am also very curious about whether or not the signature of an artist is considered to be an autograph, or simply an extension of the artwork. Consider the Batman pencil and ink drawing that I commissioned Neal Adams to draw. Neal is a comic artist based in Manhattan. The drawing is 14” x 11”.
A Neal Adams autograph is something that many collectors purchase, particularly if it is on a comic book or print of his work. Is the signature on original artwork an autograph, or is it simply an extension of the original artwork? Perhaps the signature is an autograph, and the artwork is an extension of it?
This topic can become very complicated if we also consider how acceptable it is to restore an original painting, but how unacceptable it would be to restore an original autograph. The Vatican is constantly restoring historic works of art. When was the last time that a Babe Ruth autographed baseball was restored without controversy? The difference between autographs and art will forever be determined by collectors, and what we are willing to accept.