Christmas 1977, my parents bought me a copy of Pan Books' The Visual Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. Visual Encyclopedia of Science Fiction The progenitor? I'd been reading 2000AD since April - from issue eight, since you ask - and was soon devouring secondhand paperbacks by John Christopher, John Wyndham, Arthur C Clarke …
I haven't seen that one, but I was given this one at about the same time:
I had that book as a kid but I think my parents threw it out (along with all my 'Heavy Metal' books) when I left home :-(
Also had 21st Century Foss
Also the 'Terran Trade Authority' books; a fantastic excuse to show off the art of people like Chris Foss and the sadly expired Peter Elson.
Ah, yes - and also the incomparable Angus McKie, who is represented at OOTW with a large 'future city' illustrative panel.
Right, last one to Laguna V in a manually navigated starship is a rotten egg...
B Gerling, Admiral
The talks and events attached to the exhibition are pretty meaty
William Gibson (volcano permitting), Iain M Banks, Cory Doctorow, Michael Mosley, David Deutsch, Aleks Krotoski, all on the bill exploring various aspects of SF at very reasonable prices
PMSL! My mum bought me that same encyclopaedia, and I remember that section very well!
Have to admit I'm contemplating making the arduous journey to the capital from the Isle of Wight for the chance to see Ian M. Banks or William Gibson....guess I'm still a fanboi even at this age!
It's a shame.
That there isn't a huge pile of classic SF books with a 'take one each' sign by the door.
I believe that kids (say 8 to 12) need to read, and they need something to exercise their imaginations, and SF can be very good at that (it can equally be a load of tripe, but that's life).
After finishing CS Lewis I started Tolkein (I had to stop at silmarillion) and thence to Asimov, Smith, Niven, Harrison and so many more.
I guess I wish all kids could have the same upbringing and chance to develop as me, and maybe I'm just being selfish, but nowadays it seems kids are just too close-minded.
re: I had to stop at silmarillio
I suspect most people did
A big thumbs up for the Keith Roberts mention. One of my favourite writers. I think Molly Zero is possibly the most sensual book I have ever read, and not one the reader will quickly forget.
If only he had a bigger portfolio...
"introduced by the criminally underrated British writer Keith Roberts"
Not sure underrated is the right word. Anyone who has read Pavane or Grainne would probably agree that they are excellent novels, written decades apart. The problem is that so few people have even heard of him.
Not Fantastic Planet
I think you have shown a page from Codex Seraphinianus.
> I think you have shown a page from Codex Seraphinianus.
Indeed. As the article says:
"I'd never seen or heard of Italian designer Luigi Serafini's Codex Seraphinianus,..."
ah, wacky 70's euro-scifi, what a genre!
I just googled images for "Codex Seraphinianus"
All I can say is !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It looks like, er, well, I take it some recreational substances may have been involved.
The the words of the great Zaphod Beeblebrox: "I hope you've got your head screwed on, baby!"
the death of sci-fi
Sci fi is dead. Get over it. A Sci-fi museum? It's just a museum. Please exit through the gift shop.
Scifi and British SciFi in particular has never been higher profile than it is now. With the Scottish mafia (banks, stross, Reynolds etc) as well as authors like China Meiville and others.
Try reading the best SciFi movies never made articles from a couple if weeks ago and I defy you to repeat that comment.
But certainly not vibrant and healthy.
Publishers seem to want meathead noir fiction, with morons charging around with blasters and memory backups and blowing shit up. It's not real SF - it's war-porn psychopath noir with stick-on costumes.
See also ten space marines/mercs in a drop ship fiction. And "Death'quarg of Ravenholm Book 59" sausage machine fantasy.
It's dull, dull stuff. But anything that's fresh or (the heresy...) optimistic hardly ever makes it past the agent/publisher hive mind.
There are occasional exceptions. But this isn't exactly SF's golden age.
Now, if they'd included some SciFi in English Lit classes instead of all that dry, boring crap we had to read then I might have had more interest. Alternatively, I guess it might have sucked the interest out of SciFi too.
Isaac Asimov - Caves of Steel
Prepare a detailed argument of the effects that would occur if it became common knowledge amongst the population that Daneel Olivaw was a robot.
Visual Encyclopedia of Science Fiction
I remember that one fondly too in a late seventies fashion. It wasn't my own copy, but a family friend who was storing a load of books and other household goods at my parents, following a house fire. He was an avid sci-fi fan, I was very happy. Maybe that was the faint smoky aroma having an effect?
100 years of science fiction illustration
try the above by Tony Frewin
great book, totally overlooked in the past
he was Stanley Kubrik's right hand man, see where AI came from?
mine's the one with the Krell metal pockets......... OOOOO Full Krell Metal Jacket :)
I went last week
It's a great exhibition, but DON'T go in with a kindle, you end up walking round buying things as you look in the cabinets.
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