The Comic Invention exhibition opens at the University of Glasgow

The Comic Invention

The Comic Invention exhibition starts today at the Hunterian Art Gallery looking at everything from history to artwork 

Given Scotland’s role in the comic industry (Dundee-based Beano publisher DC Thomson has a hefty £228m turnover) it’s fitting that Glasgow this month hosts the The Comic Invention exhibition exploring the history of the ‘graphic narrative’.

Sales of comics hit a 20-year high in 2014 – worth $870m (£607m) in the US and Canada alone (aided by comic book movie adaptations such as X-Men, Spider-Man and The Avengers).

The exhibition at the University of Glasgow’s Hunterian Art Gallery will examine all this, tracing the art form’s roots back to ancient Greece. Starting today the exhibition will run until 17 July.

It will span centuries and genres to take an enigmatic look at how we tell stories with pictures. Works by Lichtenstein, Warhol, Picasso and Rembrandt sit alongside medieval manuscripts and Renaissance riches.

There will be graphical treasures from ancient Egypt, satirical hipsters from the 18th century, Turner Prizers, and an extensive selection from one of the finest modern day comic artists in Frank Quitely – including previously unseen original artwork for BatmanNew X-Men and All Star Superman.

Visitors can learn how the themes of the past match those of today and that every picture tells a story- although not always the story that was intended.

There will also be several events running throughout the exhibition including Frank Quitely In Conversation,  a wine reception followed by an exclusive one to one interview with comic book artist Frank Quitely by journalist Gareth Vile. Vile will talk to him about his work and the examples in The Comic Invention exhibition.

Tickets for the exhibition are £5 or £3 concession. For more information visit

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Christian Koch

Christian Koch

Alongside his work for Director, Christian has written features for the Evening Standard, The Guardian, Sunday Times Style, The Independent, Q, Cosmopolitan, Stylist, ShortList and Glamour in an eclectic career which has seen him interview everybody from Mariah Carey to Michael Douglas through to Richard Branson with newspaper assignments including reporting on the Japanese tsunami and living with an Italian cult.

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