Lot 97
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Estimation :
110000 - 130000 EUR
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Result : 113 550EUR
ALBERT UDERZO ◊ ASTÉRIX Les Lauriers de César (T.18), Albert René 1972 Original plate no. 25, prepublished in Le Journal de Pilote no. 633, December 23, 1971. Signed and dedicated. India ink on paper 43.1 × 53 cm (16.97 × 20.87 in.) We all know the starting point of this Asterix adventure, one of the best in the series, based on a scenario by Goscinny: in a drunken promise, Abraracourcix promises his brother-in-law to cook him a dish "with Caesar's laurels"! That's why our Gauls find themselves in Rome for the second time (the first was in Asterix the Gladiator) to steal the symbol of his triumphs, his victor's crown! Naturally, it's up to our two heroes to recover the laurels. But how do Asterix and Obelix get into Caesar's palace, the best guarded in Rome by his Praetorian Guard? By being captured, of course! By a manipulated centurion who's convinced he's set a trap for them. You've got to admire Uderzo's incredibly sharp line, particularly in this beautifully composed first panel. Set in a sumptuous palace built entirely of marble with unprecedented refinement and admirable graphic interplay - in reality, Caesar's palace was far less luxurious - each Roman soldier is detailed from a different angle, from above, while our heroes are drawn from above: can you imagine the performance? The acting, particularly that of the centurion, is also fabulous. Uderzo draws them in a slight low angle, creating a sort of theatrical aside, so that the viewer can enjoy the irony of the scene without the centurion noticing. A true museum piece!
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