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Alex Ross Auction


Alex Ross is the most recognizable talent in the comics industry today. It's been said that he has been to comics what Michael Jordan has been to the NBA. His groundbreaking work on Marvels and Kingdom Come altered the way that comics and comic book characters were viewed. His fan base is immense and his original art is prized among devotees of the comics industry and art collectors alike. He's done covers for TV Guide and he was tabbed to do the official artwork for the 2002 Academy Awards.

In January of 2002, Integrated Web Solutions was honored when approached by Alex's artist representative, Sal Abbinanti, to spearhead efforts for his annual month-long online art auction. Alex has auctioned off dozens of pieces of his original art to art buyers all over the world for five years and each year, proceeds have gone to charity. In 2002, Alex was auctioning off over 30 pieces of artwork which comprised the Wonder Woman: Spirit of Truth graphic novel and all proceeds went to the Twin Towers Fund which leads September 11th relief efforts. "We saw it as using a fictional hero to help out the real-life heroes of the September 11th tragedy." said Sal Abbinanti.

"The web site has been an annual event for us for a long time. Every year we get a ton of traffic from all over the world and since all proceeds go to charity, our bidders have been very generous with their bids and their support of the causes we champion," said Sal. "That being said, due to the mission critical nature of the auction, I wanted to really display the artwork in it's best light and we needed help from a company that could respond to problems 24x7 during the auction since a large portion of our bidders are in Europe and Asia.

IWS did a slight redesign and code cleanup to the existing auction site. "We recognized right away that due to web limitations, the detail of Alex's art wasn't really coming through. We chose to create a Zoom application that would allow users to click anywhere on an image and get an enlarged view showing more detail than perhaps they were seeing in the thumbnail version. We felt that art buyers would be extremely discerning where detail of a painting was in question, so this we didn't perceive this as a "nice thing to have", we saw it as a "must-have" for the success of the auction" said John Schwarberg, creative director for IWS

The auction event raised over $350,000 for the Twin Towers Fund. During the March event, the site received over 14,500 visitors. The zoom application created by IWS performed flawlessly and was utilized over 10,000 times. "Without a doubt, this was the most seamless auction we've ever had. Alex and I couldn't have been happier with anything - the design, the application, the response from our bidders, the responsiveness of IWS - nothing. There were even times that I thought IWS was more concerned about a successful auction than I was," said Abbinanti.