‘IMAGE DUPLICATOR’ TAKES ART BACK AND RAISES MONEY FOR CHARITY

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Hero Initiative benefits from Orbital Comics events

When the BBC asked Watchmen co-creator Dave Gibbons to contribute to a program about a Roy Lichtenstein retrospective at the Tate Modern in London, no one would have foreseen it leading to a windfall for the Hero Initiative charity.

Gibbons’ condemnation of Lichtenstein’s oeuvre rang bells among many in the UK comics community, most notably designer and illustrator Rian Hughes, who had been a longtime critic of the ethics of the fine art world’s “appropriation” of commercial art. Establishing a Facebook page, IMAGE DUPLICATOR, Hughes invited creators to make their own comments on the issue by “re-appropriating” the original comic book images in their own style.

A successful exhibition was held at Orbital Comics in London’s West End, where prints of the new works were sold. In view of the fact that none of the original comic book creators whose work had been used by Lichtenstein had received payment, or even credit, for its use the exhibitors decided it would be fitting to donate all profits to the Hero Initiative, the charity that helps old-time comic book creators in medical or financial need. In all, $3250 has been sent to the charity, and Hero Initiative still has autographed copies of Gibbons’ “WHAAT?” print for sale.

While most of the individuals whose work was appropriated by Lichtenstein have since passed on, this donation will benefit other creators who are in need of financial support after a lifetime spent creating comics.

Dave Gibbons has also authorized a unique single edition of his “WHAAT?” image. Measuring 40 inches high by 88 inches wide and custom mounted in clear acrylic, this one-off, gallery-sized piece signed by Gibbons, will be auctioned later in the year.

IMAGE DUPLICATOR and the Hero Initiative would like to thank everyone whose generosity has helped celebrate the originality and creativity of the comic book and its often unsung creators.

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About The Hero Initiative

The Hero Initiative is the first-ever federally chartered not-for-profit corporation dedicated strictly to helping comic book creators in need. Hero creates a financial safety net for yesterday’s creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work. It’s a chance for all of us to give back something to the people who have given us so much enjoyment.

Since its inception, The Hero Initiative has had the good fortune to grant over $500,000 to the comic book veterans who have paved the way for those in the industry today. For more information, visit www.heroinitiative.org or call 626-676-6354.

For more information, please visit us at www.heroinitiative.org.

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