Denys Cowan art that UPS lost may be at large

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…or “lost” as the case may be. Last weekend there was a gala art show celebrating the history of Milestone Comics. To get ready for it, Michael Davis shipped a bunch of Denys Cowan original art to the Steve Geppi Entertainment Museum via UPS. The Scoop blog has the details. Although the package was VERY securely wrapped, when it arrived, all but one piece of art had been removed, which UPS blamed on “poor packaging.”

Only an 11” x 17” pen and Ink Wolverine #125 interior page by Cowan and Bill Sienkiewicz was still in the package, and even it was partially sticking out.

Missing were covers and pages and concept pieces, impossible to replace items ranging from character turnarounds for Static, Rocket and Hardware to covers and interior pages from Hardware to pieces featuring Batman, Steel and more.

According to Davis, UPS has offered no explanation as to why the shipment sat in Louisville for two extra days, but they have suggested that poor packaging was to blame for the missing pages.

“So, the packing tape (used by professional movers, among others, to keep boxes sealed, hence the namepacking tape) somehow came loose, every layer simply came apart, the plastic-sealed art then fell out, the plastic opened 28 pieces of art with it, but one somehow crawled back in the box and was able to make the trip from Kentucky to Baltimore?” Davis posted in a column on ComicMix.com.

“While UPS might not realize what they’re dealing with, the comic book and original art communities clearly do. We’ve already seen the story in Michael’s column picked up by Robot 6, Comics Alliance, The Nerds of Color, and it’s been popping up all over Facebook,” said Steve Geppi, founder of Geppi’s Entertainment Museum.


Since it appears the package was opened in transit, it’s very possible that the following art is out there and could possibly be offered for sale–there are images of the pages in question at the link above, and anyone with any knowledge of the art is asked to contact Melissa Bowersox, President of Geppi’s Entertainment Museum, by phone at (410) 458-4290 or by email at bmissy@geppismuseum.com.

Batman Ultimate Evil #1 Cover
Denys Cowan & Kent Williams
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Fight For Tomorrow #1 Page 6
Denys Cowan & Kent Williams
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Flags of Our Fathers #1
Denys Cowan & Klaus Janson
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Hardware #2 Page 7
Denys Cowan & Jimmy Palmiotti
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Hardware #2 Page 9
Denys Cowan & Jimmy Palmiotti
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Hardware #3 Cover
Denys Cowan & Jimmy Palmiotti
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Hardware #3 Page 7
Denys Cowan & Jimmy Palmiotti
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Hardware #5 Page 4
Denys Cowan & Jimmy Palmiotti
11” x 17” Pen and Ink

Steel #35 Page 8
Denys Cowan & Tom Palmer
11” x 17” Pen and Ink


 

This is a sad, demoralizing story, and the moral of it is: DON’T USE UPS!!!

Comments

  1. This doesn’t surprise me. Many years ago I shipped a Vampirella poster, produced in very limited quantity, from NY to CT. I sealed it in plastic with two double thick layers of cardboard and double packing tape. I marked, “Do Not Bend” on it. You could drop it off a cliff and it wouldn’t be harmed. Spill drinks on it and not a drop would harm the art. A week later the recipient received the package with a stabbed hole throughout the package! “Hmm, we can’t bend it, so let’s mess it up another way.” Stupidly, I never insured it and the local post office couldn’t determine which sorting station/individual did the damage. I resent another poster sealed in thin plywood. That’s right, PLYWOOD! Insured this time, without any writing on the envelope. It arrived without incident.

  2. FED EX lost an entire issue of a book I was inking. The pages never showed up anywhere since.

  3. My guess is that UPS can determine exactly where and when the damage occurred, as they can track packages en route, and when they enter and leave facilities. It should have been noted that it was received damaged somewhere along the way. Unless the damage happened ‘on the truck’ on the last leg of the trip. Was it insured?

  4. Jimmy, your art is probably in a private collection somewhere ;)

    I agree with Al@. A simple database search can show every step of the way.

  5. Fred Marra says:

    As a retired UPS employee I would think from the information that I have read that someone within UPS, possibly a driver or a worker within a Hub, might have recognized what it was and stolen the material, leaving the package since it has a tracking barcode. Hopefully someone at UPS lost prevention will look into it and, again, hopefully the thief is caught. Stealing at UPS is not tolerated.

  6. Linked, just in case it’s helpful…

  7. James Kochalka says:

    The US postal service has a very secure (and very slow) special rate where every single time the package changes hands it must be carefully examined and signed for. I recommend it for irreplaceable items.

  8. Pedro Bouça says:

    I hate UPS, FedEx and those private mail services. They are actually WORSE than the regular post office – and far more expensive to boot!

  9. Peter says:

    That packaging in that one photo does look pretty suspect. UPS makes document boxes large enough to fit comic art, so I don’t understand why they wouldn’t just use one of those if they’re paying for overnight shipping anyway.

  10. The other piece of nonsense in their excuse is that 28 large pages of art could be jarred loose in transit and then disappear. Someone unloaded a truck and then what? Failed to notice a bunch of eighteen inch drawn pieces of sturdy paper (or whatever they were) just sitting among the boxes?

  11. mrgordo says:

    As someone who has fought UPS AND won I feel I should let you know that UPS sites “Poor Packaging” as a matter of practice. When they did it to me my response was, “Well that’s unfortunate because I had it wrapped and shipped by “The UPS Store.”
    They then told me “The UPS Store” was not affiliated with UPS.
    Their next move was to tell me that unfortunately I had failed to purchase the “Pack & Ship Guarantee” therefore their hands were tied. (The “Pack & Ship Guarantee” is actually included automatically when packed by a UPS Store employee.)
    This went on for 6 months with UPS trying everything to get out of paying my insurance claim, which was legitimate.
    They paid but it took persistence.
    Good luck

  12. Chris says:

    Somewhere somehow someone is adding some Denys Cowan pages next to his Jimmy Palmiotti pages.

    I wonder if it’s feasible and cost-effective to add RFID tags to comic book pages as a way of permanently tracking them.

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