With voters casting ballots in the crucial New York state primary on Tuesday, a Canadian artist is helping to curate a gallery exhibit inspired by U.S. presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders and his message of political revolution.

The pop-up exhibit, called "The Art of a Political Revolution," features pieces inspired by the Vermont senator, and opened in New York City over the weekend. Artists from around the world have contributed to the show, with several Canadians submitting their Bernie-inspired masterpieces for display.

The featured art has a pop culture feel, and includes giant murals, lithographic prints and even puppets.

All photos by Richard Madan

Sanders gallery

Sanders art


Calgary native Tyler Gibney helped curate the exhibit and has contributed one of his own works: a dramatic black and white print of a map of America with recognizable gun parts overlaid on top.

Tyler Gibney

Bernie Sanders

Gibney says the print was inspired by the mass shootings that continue to make headlines across the country.

"It's a bit of a commentary on the gun culture in America; we don't have that in Canada" he told CTV News. "Every other week there is a new story about gun violence here."

Luis Calderin, a staffer with the Democratic senator’s campaign, said Sanders has gained the support of many in the American arts community.

"The senator's message has resonated far and wide across the country," Calderin said. "People have really gravitated towards his honesty."

And art lovers are gravitating to many of the pieces in the exhibit, Calderin said.

In particular, a colourful muppet dubbed "Ernie Bernie," made in the likeness of the snowy-haired senator has become a crowd favourite, he noted.

Sanders art

"In a campaign full of very strong and heavy issues, this piece serves as an opportunity to take more of a light-hearted look at it all," Calderin said.

Another standout piece features a colourful mural depicting Sanders on one end of a playing card and Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump on the other. The piece is called "Bern the Trump card" and it was created by artist Tommy Lee.

Sanders art

"I think it really showcases the duality of the candidates in this presidential cycle," Calderin said. "You have the positivity and optimism with Bernie Sanders and you have the negativity and fear with the Donald Trump campaign."

Sanders and his family attended the exhibit's opening night last week, with the senator making an impromptu speech in front of a piece featuring a reconfigured American flag.

Sanders art

In recent days, presidential hopefuls from both parties have been in New York, where the crucial primary polls close on Tuesday night.

"The Art of a Political Revolution" exhibit is travelling to select cities across the U.S., with its next stop set for California where the primary vote is scheduled for June 7.

Sanders art

With files from CTV's Parliamentary Correspondent Richard Madan