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3rd Floor Mardigian Library

 Today's Hours: Closed

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Zap! Pow! Bam!:
The Art of the Comic Book Cover

January 18 - April 7

Guest curator and collector Corey Gross has spent his life amassing a substantial and impressive collection of comic books dating from the 1960s to present day. He proudly owns almost every Iron Man issue ever created. The exhibition features the best of Mr. Gross's remarkable collection and focuses on the idea of the printed comic book cover as an art object. The exhibition displays around 250 comic books that showcase themes prevalent throughout the history of the art form including a large selection of Iron Man comics that illustrate the evolution of comics over the last fifty years.

The exhibition also features several pieces of original artwork, on loan courtesy of Western Michigan University Art Collection, that were used to print comic book covers, and that provide viewers with a greater understanding of how comic books are produced.

Supplemental Videos


Exhibition Events

Opening Reception
Thursday, January 18, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Professional comic book artist Jerzy Drozd will begin speaking at 6:00 p.m.
Reception is free to the public. Complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvres provided.

Comic Book Making Workshop
Thursday, March 15, 5:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Individual instruction inside the art gallery on how to create mini-comics by professional comic book artist Matt Feazell for 6th grade to college level students.
Workshop is free to the public, however, space is limited. Reservations are highly recommended.

Dearborn Gallery Rally
Saturday, April 7, 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Come view the exhibition again on its closing day and see professional comic book artist Dave Acosta demonstrate comic book, super hero drawings! Event is free to the public.

Dave Acosta is a Comic Book and Storyboard artist living in southeastern Michigan. He earned his BA in English Literature from the University of Michigan-Dearborn. Dave has drawn for companies such as Dynamite Comics, Skybound Entertainment, and Disney Digital.

Front Cover of Gallery Rally postcard

Back Cover of Gallery Rally postcard

In the News

Listen to guest curator Corey Gross' interview from WJR's Warren Pierce Radio Show.

Cover of The Invincible Iron Man #126 Comic book          Cover of Crisis on Infinite Earths #7 Comic book          Cover of The Sandman Special #1 Comic book

Cover of The Invincible Iron Man #1 Comic Book

Cover of The Amazing Spider-Man #102 Comic Book

Cover of The Doom Patron #86 Comic Book


The Alfred Berkowitz Gallery is located on the third floor of the Mardigian Library at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. For further information, see below for contact information. Anyone requiring accommodations under the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act should contact (313)-593-5087.

Featured University Art Collection Piece

Featured collection glass artwork

Soft Cylinder, Dale Chihuly (b. 1941), blown glass, 1984.
Gift of Edward C. and Mary Ellen Wall, Collection of UM-Dearborn (2009.024),
Photograph by Kip Kriigel

Highly esteemed American glass artist Dale Chihuly (b. 1941) is widely acknowledged for his role in promoting the recognition of studio glass as a fine art form. With this work, Chihuly returned to his “pick-up drawing” technique used previously in his Basket series. This time, Chihuly and his team used shard drawings to obtain more colorful compositions and intricate design patterns. The process begins with blowing a bubble and breaking it into shards. Glass threads are fused to the shard pieces with a torch in designs reflecting Navajo Blanket patterns. The detailed shard piece is then surrounded by additional glass threads and laid out on a steel table called a marver. A molten glass form on a blowpipe is then rolled over the shards and threads fusing the pieces together to form the end result, a Soft Cylinder.

---Laura Cotton, Art Curator and Gallery Manager

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