Contemporary art

Being a comic hero has traditionally been a man’s job. Now this is about to change. Renowned comic artists will draw female versions of iconic comic heroes for an exhibition that will open in the UK in May. The international Hero(in)es project creates alternatives for the male heroes and raises discussion on gender roles.

One of the participating artists is Finnish Kaisa Leka.

Hero(ine)s will also feature new work from Belgian comic artist Brecht Vandenbroucke as the British Charlie Adlard, Steve McGarry, Steve Appleby and various French artists including Hélène Becquelin, Nicolas Bannister and Yan Le Pon.

 The exhibition will be open at Vallum Gallery at University of Cumbria campus on May 7–21. On 10th of May Leka, Vanderbroucke and Appleby will run comic workshops for the students. In October, an extended version of the project will be exhibited at the UK’s biggest comics festival, Lakes International Comic Arts Festival in Kendal.

Instagram campaign #heroinesproject encourages comic enthusiasts to draw and share their own heroines. A selection of these drawings will be displayed at Lakes International Comics Arts Festival.

The first version of Hero(in)es was seen at Lyon BD comics festival in 2016, when curator JC Deveney invited French artists like  to draw female versions of iconic French comic heroes like Asterix and Tintin.

Hero(in)es is executed by the Finnish Institute in London, Institut français, Lyon BD Association, Lakes International Comic Arts Festival and the General Representation of the Government of Flanders in Britain. The project is organised on behalf of the EU Commission Representation in the UK to celebrate Europe Day.


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