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The Bedford Gallery’s Superhero Art Exhibit

The Bedford Gallery’s new exhibit explores superhero mythology.


Simon Monk, Clark Kent, 2013

Carrie Lederer remembers the excitement she felt watching Popeye cartoons as a young child.

“How exciting to think that you can eat a can of spinach and save the world,” says Lederer, curator of Walnut Creek’s Bedford Gallery. “These ideas and characters resonate with us as humans. I mean, who doesn’t want to save the world?”

This fascination with superheroes is on display in the gallery’s new exhibit, My Hero: Contemporary Art and Superhero Action, opening January 17. The exhibit features an international roster of painters, photographers, sculptors, and mixed-media artists.

Michigan artist Mark Newport knits sculptural suits of traditional heroes such as Superman and Spider-Man, as well as his own creation, Sweaterman. Artist Lizabeth Eva Rossof bases an intricate piece on an ancient Chinese warrior sculpture, then outfits the warrior in a Batman suit. Another artist’s work asks the question: What happens when Superman gets old and checks into assisted living?

Rémi Noël, Third Avenue, New York, 2005

“One of the more poignant pieces is a wonderful photograph by Dulce Pinzón, showing a man riding a bicycle to deliver pizzas while wearing a Superman suit,” says Lederer. “The photo pays tribute to immigrants who work in hard conditions for low wages.  Even though the Pizza Superman and Pinzón’s other characters don’t have supernatural powers, their bravery and determination make them superheroes.”

My Hero: Contemporary Art and Superhero Action is on display January 17–March 20 at the Bedford Gallery, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek, (925) 295-1417, bedfordgallery.org.

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