This Saturday (28 March), 12 super-size limited edition comic book covers will be unveiled at Castle Galleries in Cambridge, masterminded by the legendary Stan Lee, former president of Marvel Comics. Together with several notable artists, namely Steve Ditko and Jack Kirby, Lee helped create some of the most famous superheroes to ever pull on a spandex suit and save the day.
The ‘Superheroes’ collection of classic covers features Captain America, The Amazing Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk and The Avengers. These have been kept strictly under-wraps and will be unveiled at 12 noon, 28 March. The covers, each an exclusive edition of nine, have each been signed by Lee and will be available to buy from £2,950.
The front page of any comic book is arguably the most important of all, setting the scene, telling the story and introducing the characters in a single primary-coloured image. There is a long established heritage for contemporary sequential art which represents the struggles, the triumphs, the trials and the wonder of the human condition. Whilst comic books take this to a level of fantasy, Lee has been able to ground these narratives in reality. The Amazing Spider-Man, for instance, addressed the issues of social acceptance and personal identity, while The Incredible Hulk was a reflection of society’s fears regarding a nuclear war-ridden age. Now in its seventh decade as America’s largest comic book publisher, Lee led the expansion of Marvel Comics from a small division of a publishing house to a huge multimedia corporation. At 92 years old, he continues to be as involved with his creations as ever before.
Ian Weatherby-Blythe, managing director of Washington Green (who own Castle Galleries), says: “There’s no doubt that Marvel has had an impact on our lives. I think in some shape or form we’ve all come in contact with the characters and can relate to their experiences. “You haven’t got to be a super-fan to enjoy them and we’re glad we can share these popular works of art with the public, to allow them to own a slice of comic book history. I have no doubt that these pieces will be as popular in 10 or 50 years, after all they’ve stood the test of time already.”
Superheroes will run until 12 April.