Superman was a Foundling

14 June 2014 - 30 April 2015, 10:00 - 17:00

This year, award-winning poet and playwright, and 2014 Foundling Fellow, Lemn Sissay MBE has created Superman was a Foundling. Through mural and graphic work Sissay has created a striking visual exploration of fostering and adoption in popular culture.

Sissay's project aims to reveal and elevate fictional stars of popular and classic culture who were fostered, adopted and orphaned. Names range from characters from the foundation myth of Ancient Rome to Steig Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.

The murals in this display have been realised by the artist Charlotte Jonsmyr. Click here to see a time lapse of Lemn and the muralist at work.

The Foundling Fellowship is supported by the Clore Duffield Foundation.

Sissay considers the display a mere stepping stone to creating a comprehensive list of all these inspiring characters so we do encourage suggestions. If you would like more information about this project, or to suggest an addition, please email enquiries@foundlingmuseum.org.uk.

 

 

Alem Kelo, Refugee Boy, Benjamin Zephaniah, 2001

Anne Shirley, Anne of Green Gables, Lucy Maud Montgomery, 1908

Annie Warbucks, Annie, 1982

Asajj Ventress, Star Wars: Clone Wars, 2003

Batman, DC Comics, first appeared 1939

Becky Sharp, Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray, 1847–48

Boba Fett, Star Wars, first appeared Star Wars Holiday Special,1978 

Brenton Brown, Brixton Rock, Alex Wheadle, 1999

Carrie Willow, Carrie's War, Nina Bawden, 1973

Cassia Xiao, The Concubine of Shanghai, Hong Ying, 2011

Christopher Banks, When We Were Orphans, Kazuo Ishiguro, 2000

Cinderella, Cinderella, first appeared 1697

Darth Bane, Star Wars, first mentioned Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, 1999

David Copperfield, David Copperfield, Charles Dickens, 1850

Dick Whittington, folklore, early 17th century

Donatello, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, first appearance 1984

Dorothy Gale, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum, 1900

Edward Cullen, The Twilight Series, Stephenie Meyer, 2005

Edwin Drood, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Charles Dickens, 1870

Eppie, Silas Marner: The Weaver of Raveloe, George Eliot,  1861

Estella Havisham, Great Expectations, Charles Dickens, 1860

Esther Summerson, Bleak House, Charles Dickens, 1852

Euphrasie, Les Misérables, Victor Hugo, 1862

Eva Luna, Eva Luna, Isabel Allende, 1987

Evey Hammond, V for Vendetta, Alan Moore and David Lloyd, 1982

Fanny Price, Mansfield Park, Jane Austen, 1814

Fanny Robin, Far From the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy, 1874

FitzChivalry, Farseerers Trilogy, Robin Hobb, 1995

Frodo Baggins, The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkein, 1954

Galen Marek (Starkiller or The Apprentice), Star Wars, first appeared Star Wars: the Force Unleashed, 2008

Gideon Smeed, Hetty Feather, Jacqueline Wilson, 2009

Ham Peggotty, David Copperfield, Charles Dickens, 1850

Han Solo, Star Wars, 1977

Harriet Beadle (Tattycoram), Little Dorrit, Charles Dickens, 1855

Harry Potter, Harry Potter, JK Rowling,  1997

Hashio Mizouchi, Coin Locker Babies, Ryu Murakami, 1980

Heathcliff, Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë, 1847

Heidi, Heidi, Johanna Spyri, 1880

Helena Landless, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Charles Dickens, 1870

Hercules, Hercules, Disney, 1997

Hetty Feather, Hetty Feather, Jacqueline Wilson, 2009

Hortense, Small Island, Andrea Levy, 2004

Hotaru Tomoe (Sailor Saturn), Sailor Moon, Naoko Takeuchi, 1992

Huckleberry Finn, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, 1884

Jack Dawkins (Artful Dodger), Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens, 1838

Jack Dawson, Titanic, 1997

Jack Rider, Alex Rider Series, Anthony Horowitz, 2000

Jack Worthing, The Importance of Being Earnest, Oliver Wilde, 1895

Jacob Vaark, A  Mercy, Toni Morrison, 2008

Jamal Malik, Slumdog Millionaire, 2008

James Bond, James Bond, Ian Fleming, 1953

James Trotter, James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl, 1961

Jane Eyre, Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë, 1847

Jean Valjean, Les Misérables, Victor Hugo, 1862

Jerusha Abbott, Daddy Long-Legs, Jean Webster, 1912

Jude Fawley, Jude the Obscure, Thomas Hardy's novels, 1895

Kikuyuki Sekiguchi, Coin Locker Babies, Ryu Murakami, 1980

Klaus Baudelaire, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Lemony Snicket, 1999 

Lisbeth Salander, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Steig Larsson, 2005

Leonardo, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, first appearance 1984

Luke Skywalker, Star Wars, 1977

Lux Bonteri, Star Wars, 1977

Lyra Belacqua (Lyra Silvertongue), His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman, 1995

Madeline, Madeline, Ludwig Belemans, 1939

Makoto Kino (Sailor Jupiter), Sailor Moon, Naoko Takeuchi, 1992

Mamo, Garbage King, Elizabeth Laird, 2003

Mamoru Chiba, Sailor Moon, Naoko Takeuchi, 1992

Mary Lennox, The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett, 1911

Matilda Wormwood, Matilda, Roald Dahl, 1988

Messalina was fostered.

Michelangelo, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, first appearance 1984

Miss Honey, Matilda, Roald Dahl, 1988

Miss Wade, Little Dorrit, Charles Dickens, 1855

Natty Bumppo, Leatherstocking Tales, James Fenimore Cooper, 1841

Nell Trent, The Old Curiosity Shop, Charles Dickens, 1841

Neville Landless, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Charles Dickens, 1870

Oedipus, mythical Greek king of Thebes

Oliver Twist, Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens, 1838

Ororo Munroe (Storm), X-Men, Marvel Comics, first appearance 1975

Philip Pirrip, Great Expectations, Charles Dickens, 1861

Pippi Longstocking, Pippi Longstocking, Astrid Lindgren, 1945

Pollyanna Whittier, Pollyanna, Eleanor H. Porter, 1913

Prince Caspian, Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia, C. S. Lewis, 1951

Prince Cor (Shasta), The Horse and His Boy, C.S. Lewis, 1954

Princess Leia, Star Wars, 1977

Quasimodo, The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, Victor Hugo, 1831

Ram Mohammed, Q & A, Vikas Swarup, 2005

Raphael, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, first appearance 1984

Rapunzel, Children’s and Household Tales, Brothers Grimm, 1812

Richard Carstone, Bleak House, Charles Dickens, 1852

Robin, DC Comics, first appearance Detective Comics #38, 1940

Romulus and Remus, twin brothers and central characters of Rome's foundation myth

Rosa Bud, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Charles Dickens, 1870 

Rose Maylie, Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens, 1838

Sade and Femi Solaja, The Other Side of Truth, Beverley Naidoo, 2000

Sarah Crewe, A Little Princess, Frances Hodgson Burnett, 1905

Scarlett O’Hara, Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell, 1936

Setsuko, Grave of The Fireflies, Akiyuki Nosaka, 1967

Sigurd, The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún, J.R.R. Tolkein, 2009

Smike, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, Charles Dickens, 1839

Snow White, Grimms' Fairy Tales, Brothers Grimm, 1812

Sookie Stackhouse, The Southern Vampire Mysteries, Charlaine Harris, 2001

Sophie Fevvers, Nights at the Circus, Angela Carter, 1984

Spider-Man, Marvel Comics, first appearance Amazing Fantasy #15, 1962

Sue Trinder, Fingersmith, Sarah Waters, 2002

Sunny Baudelaire, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Lemony Snicket, 1999

Superman, DC Comics, Action Comics #1, 1938

Sylvia Green, The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, Joan Aiken, 1962

The Penguin, DC Comics, first appearance Detective Comics #58, 1941

Tiggist, The Garbage King, Elizabeth LairdToby, 2003

Tohru Honda, Fruits Basket, Natsuki Takaya, 1998

Tom Hagen, The Godfather, Mario Puzo, 1969

Tom Jones, The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling, Henry Fielding, 1749

Tom Riddle, Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling, 1997

Tom Sawyer, Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain, 1876

Turanga Leela, Futurama, 1999

Violet Baudelaire, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Lemony Snicket, 1999

Wedge Antilles, Star Wars, 1977

William Beech, Goodnight Mr Tom, Michelle Magorian, 1981

Wolverine, Marvel Comics, first appearance The Incredible Hulk #180, 1974

Yuri Zhivago, Doctor Zhivago, Boris Pasternak, 1957

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