The amazing adventures of Luke Gooddy’s silver superheroes and villains: an installation of small-scale sculptures.

Saturday July 27th – Saturday September 21st 2024


Young Reddish-based artist Luke Gooddy first started making little characters out of tin foil about 12 years ago, and recently we asked him to create a small-scale installation of them!. We had a chat with him to find out more about how it all came about and what this exhibition means to him…


When and why did you first make them?

“I’ve been doing it since primary school! I can’t remember exactly when I first started… it kind of just happened. When I was a kid I always looked at superhero toys, which were often really expensive and I couldn’t necessarily afford them… So I decided to make my own!”

“I like this technique of model making – foil is a cheap, multi purpose material, easy to bend & shape into anything. I’d make them and then play with them and make them for other people too.”


How did the exhibition come about and how do you feel about having one here?

“When I started volunteering in the café at Arc I made a foil Easter Bunny hero character complete with a basket of eggs and bow tie for our Easter Saturday Art Club. Everyone here loved it so I made more, which led to this exhibition! ‘Foiled!’ is an exhibition of some of my comic book characters, which are what I make most [of my sculptures] of. We’ve created a world for them in this case…”

“I’m really excited, it’s a great opportunity to show people across Stockport my work, something I never thought would happen in my life, I still can’t believe it’s happening!”


What is your creative process?

“I find a picture for visual reference & scale it down, then I build a skeleton from finely wrapped foil & get it in the right position.

Starting with the head, then arms, I sculpt each bit in turn, making sure it accurately represents the anatomy, building up the layers of the figure until I’m happy with it. Head to toe, it’s nothing but tin foil.”

What’s your experience volunteering with Arc been like?

“I love volunteering in [Hat Works] Cafe, everyone’s fantastic company.

I’ve really grown in confidence and skills, particularly with barista training and now I’m actively looking for a job in a coffee shop, all thanks to volunteering here.

What’s it like working with experienced volunteer Dave Brind?

“[Dave’s] really experienced and has really helped with the design of the installation. We always share ideas together – he’s great to collaborate with.”

“Having been involved in scenic design and modelmaking over the years this seemed a perfect partnership to realise Lukes’s project. My previous experience has been varied over a 50-year career in the arts, including scenic art for the theatre, art lecturer and more recently gallery visitor assistant at the Whitworth.

Helping Luke with the background display of his intricate foil models – based on popular paper comic characters with a rich history, some going back to the 1930’s and 1950’s – has been a real pleasure. 

The detail of modelling required with such a fragile material and no glue demands a special skill and patience.”

Visitors should look closely as each figure is incredibly detailed…

“I like to challenge myself; “how much detail can I get in?” – eg. Superman’s symbol, the design on Captain America’s shield.”

Luke hopes that visitors can enjoy the attention to detail and can pinpoint the things that make each character distinct and unique.

“I hope people can identify the characters… It’s always a challenge when the only colour you’re working with is silver!”

Luke wants people to be inspired by the installation, hopefully feeling that they might like to have a go themselves!

“Yeah.. to bring more tin foil model makers out of the shadows.”

Foiled! opens on July 27th alongside Arc’s monthly Saturday Art Club and the launch of a new exhibition of products developed through our Creative Enterprise programme. The event will include creative activities suitable for ages 3+ in our dedicated Art Studio. This month we’ll be trying Simulated Cyanotype, Invent Your Own Comic Superhero or Villain and collaborate on our Mixed Media Sea Scene!

The installation is on display in the Hat Works Cafe exhibition space which is open on Thursdays and Fridays 10:00-16:00 and Saturdays 11:00-15:00, from July 27th – September 21st.